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News & Press: Pain Policy

Practice Alert: DEA Targeting Off-Label Prescribing of Opioid Products ​

Thursday, November 9, 2017   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Katie Duensing, J.D.
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The Drug Enforcement Administration has recently taken criminal and administrative action against physicians who prescribe transmucosal immediate-release fentanyl (TIRF) off-label for the treatment of breakthrough pain. Historically, prescribing medications off-label has been a decision left to the discretion of the prescriber based on the specific needs of the patient; therefore, physicians prescribing these products off-label for noncancer breakthrough pain should be aware of this increased scrutiny. To avoid issues with the DEA, prescribers may want to consider (1) diligently exploring alternative treatments before prescribing TIRF products off-label, and (2) carefully documenting their decision to prescribe these products off-label, with a clear description of the medical necessity of the medication.