CDC Opioid Guideline Panel Set to Review Draft

Alicia Ault

January 13, 2016

A newly appointed panel of experts will meet in late January to present their observations on the proposed opioid prescribing guideline issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in December.

The CDC's National Center for Injury Prevention and Control's Board of Scientific Counselors appointed the 10-member expert review panel on January 7. It includes internists, pain and addiction specialists, public health experts, and a pain patient.

That workgroup has been charged with reviewing the draft opioid prescribing guideline and will deliver its observations to the Board of Scientific Counselors in a public meeting on January 28.

The guideline — aimed at primary care physicians — was published in the Federal Register on December 14. But since an initial, earlier draft first came to light in September, the development process has been the focus of intense controversy. Pain patients and some physician organizations, including the American Medical Association, claimed a lack of transparency.

The published proposal is no less controversial. It had received more than 2500 comments at press time.

The draft, which contained 12 recommendations, was reviewed by a panel of experts that included representatives from the Society of General Internal Medicine, American Academy of Family Physicians, and American College of Physicians. The recommendations are only for prescribing in primary care settings and only for treating chronic pain lasting longer than 3 months that is outside of end-of-life care.

The CDC has not yet determined when the final guideline will be published, according to an agency spokesperson.

The 10 members of the workgroup reviewing the draft are as follows:

  • Erin Krebs, MD, MPH, an investigator with the Department of Veterans Affairs' Center for Chronic Disease Outcomes Research, Minneapolis, Minnesota

  • Mitchell H. Katz, MD, director of the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services, California

  • Mark Steven Wallace, MD, chair of the Division of Pain Medicine at the University of California, San Diego Medical Center

  • Gregory Terman, MD, PhD, professor and director of Pain Medicine Research at the University of Washington, Seattle

  • Katherine Galluzzi, DO, professor and chair of the Department of Geriatrics at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, Pennsylvania

  • Christina Porucznik, PhD, MSPH, associate professor of family and preventive medicine at the University of Utah School of Medicine, Salt Lake City

  • Penney Cowan, founder of the American Chronic Pain Association, Rocklin, California

  • Chinazo Cunningham, MD, MS, professor of medicine and family and social medicine at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York

  • Anne Burns, RPh, vice president, professional affairs at the American Pharmacists Association, Washington, DC

  • Traci Green, PhD, MSc, associate professor, emergency medicine, and associate director of the Injury Prevention Research Center at Boston University Medical Center, Massachusetts

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