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Module 11: Opioids for Pain: Understanding and Mitigating Risks
Opioids are commonly prescribed for chronic pain, but are also associated with a risk for serious harms including overdose and opioid use disorder. This module reviews risk factors for opioid misuse, opioid use disorder, and overdose in patients with chronic pain, explains methods for screening and assessing for problematic opioid use, reviews methods for mitigating risks associated with prescribed opioids, and details non-opioid treatment approaches for pain. The module is based on principles in the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s guideline on opioids for chronic pain and reviews recent evidence on benefits and harms of opioids.
Target Audience
Physicians, nurses, and healthcare teams who are treating patients with substance use disorder (SUD).
Roger Chou, MD | Professor of Medicine; Oregon Health and Science University; Director, Pacific Northwest Evidence-Based Practice Center

At the conclusion of this activity participants should be able to:

  • Describe risk factors for opioid misuse, opioid use disorder (OUD), and overdose in patients with chronic pain
  • Explain methods for screening and assessment for problematic opioid use
  • Explain methods for monitoring and evaluating patients prescribed opioids for chronic pain to mitigate risks
  • Describe non-opioid treatment approaches for chronic pain
Core Competencies as a result of participating in this activity:   
Interpersonal Skills and Communication
Medical Knowledge
Patient Care
Method of participation in the activity

In order to receive maximum credit, learners must: 

1. Review the materials provided in this module.
2. Earn a minimum cumulative score of 80% on the post-test. 
3. Complete an evaluation to assess satisfaction and plans for individual and/or team practice change.
4. Follow instructions at the end of the course regarding how to retrieve a certificate.* 

*Credit will not be awarded unless all components of the program are completed.  Partial credit will not be awarded.

Availability: On-Demand
Expires on 01/26/2023
Cost: FREE
Credit Offered:
1.25 CME Credits
1.25 Other Professionals Credits
1.25 Nursing Credits
1.25 IPCE Credits
The content on this site is intended solely to inform and educate medical professionals. This site shall not be used for medical advice and is not a substitute for the advice or treatment of a qualified medical professional.

Funding for this initiative was made possible (in part) by grant nos. 6H79TI081968 and 1H79TI083343 from SAMHSA. The views expressed in written conference materials or publications and by speakers and moderators do not necessarily reflect the official policies of the Department of Health and Human Services; nor does mention of trade names, commercial practices, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.

For Waiver Inquiries, email PCSS.


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