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The latest in a string of states adopting drug formularies to limit opioid prescriptions for injured workers, Arkansas is set to launch new rules for prescribing starting July 1.
The formulary, adopted by the Arkansas Workers’ Compensation Commission in 2017, limits opioid prescriptions to five days on the first fill and requires preauthorization for refills. The formulary also poses a 90-day limit on opioids, calling for subsequent preauthorization, documentation on improved function, and a weaning plan, among other requirements.
Doctors will also have the check the state’s prescription drug monitoring program database prior to prescribing opioids or benzodiazepines, anti-anxiety drugs that are said to be addicting and sedative, per the rules.
The formulary limits compounded medications by requiring preauthorization that includes “medical certification of the patient’s inability to tolerate treatment by other noncompounded medications,” according to the rules.
The Arkansas Senate is considering a bill that would establish an optional alternative system outside of the state’s workers compensation system to finance and administer benefits for injured workers.