Substance Use Disorder Prevention & Treatment

Massachusetts Health & Hospital Association Substance Use Disorder Prevention and Treatment Task Force

At the request of the MHA Board of Trustees, the association formed a multi-disciplinary group of clinicians and operational staff to develop standards of practice and resources for healthcare providers to address the high incidence of opioid use disorder within the Commonwealth. MHA member hospitals have committed to using the guidelines within clinical practices as outlined below. While we encourage the adoption of these standards in other levels of care, the association continues to work with other provider associations and patient advocacy groups to further develop best practices in addressing the opioid crisis and the profound impact it has on the communities that we serve.


Guidelines

These guidelines outline several provider and operational recommendations related to prescribing opioid and/or opiate medications within a hospital setting, including hospital owned/affiliated clinics or physician practices. The goal is to develop a general standard for limiting the use of or finding alternatives to prescription opioids. The guidance includes the following materials:

Guidelines for Opioid Management within a Hospital Setting

The SUDPTTF has approved and issued a second set of guidelines outlining several provider and operational recommendations related to prescribing opioid and/or opiate medications within a hospital setting, including hospital owned/affiliated clinics or physician practices. The goal is to develop a general standard for limiting the use of or finding alternatives to prescription opioids. We encourage all hospitals to adopt the recommendations. The guidance includes the following materials:

  • Naloxone Standing Order Best Practices,- A summary of the state - recommended steps that facilities should follow if they choose to adopt a standing order within their internal pharmacies.
  • Template Patient Fact Sheet, - Jointly issued by MHA and Massachusetts Medical Society, - It is recommended that patients are provided this form when a prescription opioid is issued (or a provider may use some or all of this language in your existing fact sheets provided to patients)
    - Folha de informações ao paciente (Portuguese patient fact sheet)
    - Hoja informativa para el paciente ((Spanish patient fact sheet)
  • Template Medication Storage Fact Sheet, - Proposed recommendations for safe and appropriate storage of opioid medications within a patient’s residence that may also be provided to patients when a prescription is issued.
  • Available Drug Disposal Options, - Provides an overview of local and statewide appropriate and safe disposal options for opioids. Also provides space for a hospital to include information on disposal options within each facility, if available.
  • Hospital Commitment Letter, - Asking all hospitals to complete to demonstrate their commitment to each of the six provider and eight operational recommendations.

Guidelines for Emergency Department Opioid Management

These guidelines establish a baseline emergency department (ED) operational practice that will: standardize opioid prescribing practices, provide guidance on screening patients seeking opioid prescriptions, offer information on appropriate pain management and treatment, and help identify resources for patients needing substance use treatment. The overall goal is to better enable ED providers to take an active role in limiting inappropriate access to opioid pain medications. The materials include the following:


Guidelines for Preventing Opioid Misuse in Hospitals

The Massachusetts Health & Hospital Association (MHA) and Tufts Medical Center, working with hospital clinicians and operational staff in Massachusetts and other states developed the following two documents that outline a patient centered approach to for the prevention of opioid misuse by patients admitted for care and treatment in a hospital inpatient setting:

The Inpatient Opioid Misuse Prevention Guidelines identify best practices (clinical practices and operational policies) to optimize patient care through standardizing

  • Screening for opioid use disorder among patients admitted for inpatient level care;
  • Prevention of inpatient acute opioid withdrawal through opioid agonist treatment (OAT);
  • Working with patients and visitors to identify and prevent non-prescribed opioids from being brought into a hospital setting.

The Patient and Family Agreement on Opioids was written specifically for patients, families, and visitors. Among the goals of developing a patient centric model of care, the document outlines the roles and responsibilities of the patient and families/visitors to work with hospitals to reduce the presence of non-prescribed opioids within a hospital setting that may adversely impact a patient’s care and treatment.


Other Resources