Yet another study indicates that patients are being tapered off prescription painkillers at “rapid” rates that surpass federal guidelines.
Among more than 100,000 patients enrolled in both commercial insurance and Medicare Advantage programs, researchers found that the annual percentage undergoing tapering doubled between 2008 and 2017.
In response to the opioid crisis, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released a tapering guideline in 2016 that sent a chilling effect throughout the chronic pain community, experts say. It was recently tempered, but not before physicians and hospital networks began removing pain patients from their medication or sending them away entirely.
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