CMS Updates on Efforts to Address Opioid Epidemic

The Medicare Administrative Contractors (MACs) under the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) recently mailed letters to all Medicare fee-for-service providers to outline federal agency efforts to reduce opioid misuse by Medicare enrollees, including:

  • Providing guidance on co-prescribing Naloxone
  • Implementing new Medicare Part D opioid policies
  • Promoting a range of safe and effective pain treatments

Also released by CMS in February was an expanded version of the Opioid Prescribing Mapping Tool, which includes current data to effectively address the opioid epidemic across the country. The goal is to better inform local prevention and treatment efforts, particularly in rural communities hard hit by the opioid crisis.

New to this tool is data on opioid prescribing through Medicaid, along with the capability to make geographic comparisons of Medicare Part D opioid prescribing rates over time for urban and rural communities.

The full text of the press release can be found here: CMS Press Release (issued February 22).