Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts is deploying a new policy regarding opioid scripts beginning on July 1. Physicians will be restricted from writing more than a 30 days supply of powerful painkillers without a mandatory review by BCBS.
This is a "first of its kind" policy in commercial/group health (as far as I can tell), though the concept isn't foreign to us in work comp. The issue of prescription drug abuse is pervasive and I'm pleased to see BCBS of MA take this bold step.
Yes, this is going to create some additional administrative burden and expense for physicians. Those concerns are legitimate. Unfortunately, the societal cost of abuse and addiction are sufficiently high that policies such as this are necessary.
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