Pain Patients Who Take Opioids Can’t Get in the Door at Half of Primary Care Clinics

By: Kara Gavin
Submitted by: Marsha Harman, Rush Center for Clinical Skills and Simulation

People who take opioid medications for chronic pain may have a hard time finding a new primary care clinic that will take them on as a patient, according to a new “secret shopper” study of hundreds of clinics in nine states across the country. Simulated patients who said their doctor or other primary care provider had retired were more likely to be told they could be accepted as new patients, compared with those who said their provider had stopped prescribing opioids to them for an unknown reason. Stigma against long-term users of prescription opioids, likely related to the prospect of taking on a patient who might have an opioid use disorder or addiction, appears to play a role.

Read the full article at University of Michigan Health Lab here

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