The Opioid Use Disorder (OUD) epidemic continues to grow and affect more Americans each day. The American Medical Association confirmed that at least 40 states have reported increases in opioid fatalities since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In December of 2020, the Centers for Disease Control announced that overdose deaths had accelerated in the months before the coronavirus swept the country and continued to increase during the pandemic.
The opioid crisis is challenging under any circumstances, but it has become increasingly more challenging due to the economic, physical, and psychological strain of the pandemic.
To address the continuing opioid epidemic, URAC developed an Opioid Stewardship Designation to promote patient safety and the appropriate use of opioid medication, as well as to encourage innovation in managing opioid use and decreasing the risk of substance abuse disorder.
The designation provides a framework for organizations to demonstrate their commitment to patients’ safe use of opioid medications.
The designation is optional and supplements already-existing accreditations and certifications and is especially appropriate as an addition to the following programs:
- Specialty Pharmacy Accreditation
- Mail Service Pharmacy Accreditation
- Pharmacy Benefit Management Accreditation
- Health Utilization Management Accreditation
- Telehealth Accreditation
This optional designation is a valuable way for your organization to demonstrate your initiatives to address opioid misuse and promote safe and appropriate opioid medication use.
With only four standards in this designation, achieving URAC’s Opioid Stewardship Designation can easily demonstrate your organization’s commitment to combating the opioid crisis.
What type of organizations may apply for the Opioid Stewardship Designation?
Organizations that currently hold, or are actively seeking, accreditation or certification in another URAC program and whose operations affect patient access to, or use of, opioid medications may apply.