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State Department Of Health Endorses New Opioid Guidelines
Updated June 24, 2016 6:15 AM | Filed under: Health
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(INDIANAPOLIS) - The Indiana State Department of Health is endorsing a new set of guidelines for emergency departments prescribing opioids for acute pain.

The Governor's Task Force on Drug Enforcement, Treatment and Prevention voted to help the Indiana State Medical Association and the Indiana Hospital Association -- which wrote the guidelines -- distribute the information to the state's emergency rooms. Guidance includes when an emergency room doctor should prescribe a painkiller, to whom a doctor should give the medicine and how large a prescription is appropriate.

Indiana State Medical Association Government Relations Director Mike Rinebold says the rules are meant for educational, not punitive, purposes, and aren't codified. However, he says almost all emergency rooms are members of the hospital association and are expected to follow the guidelines.

Among other directives, the guidelines say that except in rare circumstances, emergency doctors should limit opioids to a five-day supply and be wary of replacing drugs that may have been lost or stolen.

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