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OxyContin Abuse Prevention Bill Faces Challenges in Congress

WASHINGTON, D.C. - As reported by the National Underwiter , H.R. 4956, the “Stop Oxy Abuse Act of 2010", which would place restrictions on the number of prescriptions issued for this widely used painkiller, faces serious challenges in securing passage in Congress.

NCCI Addresses Workers’ Compensation Prescription Drugs Costs

Increased Utilization of Predominantly Expensive Drugs Fuel Cost Rise An August 2011 research brief by the National Council on Compensation Insurance, Inc. (NCCI) analyzed the trend of prescription drugs constituting a disproportionately high percentage of workers' compensation expenses. The...

Federal Agents Arrest Two Dozen Boeing Employees in Prescription Drug Abuse Sting

Agents from the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Drug Enforcement Administration have arrested employees and former employees of Boeing's Ridley Park, Pennsylvania plant and one non-employee in a coordinated, long-term, undercover effort aimed at prescription drug abuse at the manufacturing plant...

Prescription Drug Abuse in America (Part Two) – The “P” Stakeholders

By Stuart Colburn, Esq. This is the second part of a three-part series on prescription drug abuse in America. Part One explained “the problem ”. Part Two below identifies the “P” stakeholders involved with this epidemic: Pharmaceutical Companies Physicians...

Prescription Drug Abuse in America (Part Two) – The “P” Stakeholders

By Stuart Colburn, Esq. This is the second part of a three-part series on prescription drug abuse in America. Part One explained “the problem ”. Part Two below identifies the “P” stakeholders involved with this epidemic: Pharmaceutical Companies Physicians ...

Prescription Drug Abuse in America (Part Three) - Strategies

By Stuart Colburn, Esq. This is the third part of a three-part series on prescription drug abuse in America. Part One explained “the problem”. Part Two identified the stakeholders involved with this epidemic. Part Three below discusses strategies for addressing prescription drug...

Prescription Drug Abuse in America (Part Three) - Strategies

By Stuart Colburn, Esq. This is the third part of a three-part series on prescription drug abuse in America. Part One explained “the problem”. Part Two identified the stakeholders involved with this epidemic. Part Three below discusses strategies for addressing prescription drug abuse...

Comfortably Numb: The Impact of Prescription Pain Medications on the Proper Determination of Permanent Disability

It may be an unfortunate reality but narcotics are a common aspect of medical treatment within the workers’ compensation system. As pain is an extremely individual experience, it is difficult if not impossible to assess whether the medications prescribed are excessive, inadequate or appropriate...

CWCI Estimates California Workers’ Comp Drug Testing Costs Hit $98 Million in 2011

A new California Workers’ Compensation Institute (CWCI) study finds that widespread use of narcotic painkillers to treat work-related injuries – including relatively minor injuries where their use is not supported by medical evidence -- has fueled exponential growth in the use of drug testing...

Trends in Workers’ Compensation Narcotics Use: Avoiding Early Use is Key

By John Stahl, Esq. A May 2012 report from the National Council on Compensation Insurance Holdings, Inc. , (NCCI) addressed the conclusions of the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (ACOEM) that “the overuse of opioid therapy to treat chronic pain conditions is becoming...

Narcotics Use Mismanaged: Guidelines Ignored

The most disturbing conclusion that the Workers’ Compensation Research Institute (WCRI) presented in a webinar entitled “Use of Narcotics and Compliance with Guidelines” was that many workers’ compensation claimants (claimants) who were prescribed narcotics were not provided recommended...

Amputated Fingertips, Marijuana, and Oxycontin Vapors: Larson's and the Law of Intoxication

By John Stahl, Esq. Whether proof that a workers’ compensation claimant ingested marijuana or another illegal substance within a relevant period before sustaining otherwise compensable harm justified denying workers’ compensation benefits for that harm demonstrates the “it depends”...

National and State-by-State Workers' Comp News Roundup Powered by Larson's (6/3/2013)

Sign up here for our free workers' compensation enewsletters (National or California Edition) to receive weekly news items. Be sure to select the enewsletter of your choice. NATIONAL NEWS: Abuse-Deterrent OxyContin Formulation Provides Relief to Workers Comp Payers . New DSM-V Arrives Amidst...

Utilization Rates as Primary Drivers of Workers’ Compensation Prescription Drug Costs

NCCI Study Analyzes Medical Benefits Expenses Knowing that high prescription drug costs are a large component of the current challenges related to curbing workers’ compensation expenses is of limited value. Finding feasible methods to reduce the overall cost of providing workers’ compensation...

Vermont Workers' Compensation Update: October to December 2013

This list of recent noteworthy cases was compiled by Keith J. Kasper of McCormick, Fitzpatrick, Kasper & Buchard, PC. VERMONT DEPARTMENT OF LABOR DECISIONS Nguyen v. Best Foods Baking Co. , Opinion No. 22-13WC (October 2, 2013) Claimant’s ongoing Oxycontin medication regimen...

California: Slow Taper of Opioid Usage: UR Decisions Must Be Consistent With the MTUS

In McCool v. Monterey Bay Medicar , 2014 Cal. Wrk. Comp. P.D. LEXIS --, the WCAB panel rescinded the WCJ’s award of medical treatment in the form of Oxycontin, Norco and Lyrica to the applicant who sustained an industrial low back injury on 9/17/83 resulting in three back surgeries. The WCAB...

McCool

Can an insurer submit medication prescription requests to utilization review (UR) even where those medications have been repeatedly authorized before? That question has been hotly debated in California workers’ comp circles after a recent WCAB Significant Panel Decision, Patterson v. The Oaks...

Research on Risks, Effectiveness of Long-Term Opioid Pain Therapy Given a Failing Grade

Roger Rabb, J.D., Special Correspondent for the LexisNexis Workers’ Compensation eNewsletter As physicians continue to prescribe opioids such as Vicodin, OxyContin, and codeine to help patients with chronic pain, there is a growing concern that the costs of such pain treatment options, whether...