Recently the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Pain Management Best Practices Interagency Task Force released draft acute and chronic pain management best practice recommendations which aim to reduce gaps in current pain management policy within health systems and align with solutions presented and advocated for by the American Society of Anesthesiologists.

Asokumar Buvanendran, M.D., chair of ASA’s Committee on Pain Medicine, presented before the Task Force at its inaugural meeting in May, and is available for interviews on the recommendations, the opioid crisis, and can discuss the importance of:

  • Opioid-sparing techniques, which can impact the number of opioids prescribed to patients and, consequently, the number of unused opioids in families’ homes following surgery
  • Insurance coverage for evidence-based interventional procedures for chronic pain, and ensuring patient access to these effective pain treatments by properly trained and skilled pain specialists
  • Other opioid reduction strategies including models of care such as the Perioperative Surgical Home (PSH) and improving prescription drug monitoring programs

Additional information on strategies ASA supports to address the opioid epidemic is available here.