Health Care Providers

What can health care providers and pharmacists do to help end the opiate epidemic?

Tools to Help

Physicians, Dentists, other prescribers and Pharmacists can play a big role in decreasing the opiate epidemic by using tools to prevent overprescribing and diversion of prescription medications. The Ohio Automated Rx Reporting System (OARRS) and the Generation Rx Toolkit are helpful strategies for educating health care professionals.

“Nationally, only 53% of primary care physicians use their state prescription reporting system.”

Source: Rutkow, L., Turner, L., Lucas, E., Hwang, C., Alexander C.G. (2015)  Most Primary Care Physicians Are Aware Of Prescription Drug Monitoring Programs, But Many Find The Data Difficult To Access. Health Affairs March 2015 vol. 34 no. 3 484-492.

The Ohio Automated Rx Reporting System (OARRS) system can be used to check each of your patients and customers before you write or fill a prescription. OARRS allows prescribers, pharmacists and certain law enforcement officials to quickly identify drug seeking behaviors and help keep potentially dangerous medications out of the hands of addicts and abusers.

  • An OARRS Prescription History Report also helps assure that your patient is getting the appropriate drug therapy and is taking his or her medication as prescribed.
  • To access OARRS click here.
  • For easy registration instructions on requesting Patient Rx History Reports using OARRS, click here.

Generation Rx: Preventing the Misuse and Abuse of Prescription Medications is a toolkit to be used by pharmacists, pharmacy students and other health professionals to provide community presentations about this serious and growing public health problem. The toolkit contains a simple set of PowerPoint slides with talking points, a handout containing key messages, and frequently asked questions. Supplemental toolkit materials also include a quiz for program participants, and a commitment card.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) developed a guideline for prescribing opioid pain medication for patients with chronic pain. The CDC Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain aims to reduce the number of people who misuse, abuse or overdose these drugs. There are many tools at including a Checklist for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain. Other resources can be found here.