img source: Michael Dykstra
Back in March, The White House asked medical schools to sign a pledge to require students to learn new federal guidelines for safe opioid prescription use. “We are over 10 years into this epidemic, and I don’t think we’ve seen a robust enough response from the medical community,” said Michael Botticelli, head of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy.
Dr. Ted Parran of Case Western Reserve School of Medicine has taught remedial courses for doctors who tend to over-prescribe painkillers. He’s taught this for over 20 years!
Last November, Governor Charlie Baker worked with all four medical schools in the state to come up with a list of 10 skills essential to safe opioid prescribing and addiction treatment, and to incorporate them into their curriculum.
They have made some changes already: Just last week, graduating medical and nurse practitioner students at the University of Massachusetts took a new, required, four-hour opioid course, featuring clinical scenarios with trained actors.
Harvard Medical School plans to increase the emphasis on pain treatment and substance use disorder in two required pre-clinical courses.