Academic Detailing to Combat Opioids in Northern California

Posted in News on 11.17.2017

Kasier Health News recently reported that money from Obama-era grants is being used to fund academic detailing programs in California for the purpose of educating providers on the risks of prescribing opioids. To date, academic detailing programs has been used to address overprescribing of opioids and provide alternatives to managing patient pain in at least seven other states, as well as Washignton, DC.

Alosa Health Dr. Jerry Avorn spoke with Kaiser Health News to elaborate on the utility of using academic detailing programs to combat overprescribing of opioids, and he also commented on the “poetic justice” of “using the same kind of marketing approach to disseminate helpful evidence-based information as some [drug] companies were using [to aggressively push opioids]”

As for the educators, or detailers, they are California doctors and pharmacists who want to bring evidence-based information to their peers. “I view it as peer education,” said one detailer, a physician who no longer sees patients. The academic detailing interaction is not a scolding or a lecture, but rather an opportunity to provide support for a challenging topic.

Original title: Tearing a Page Out of Pharma’s Playbook to Fight the Opioid Crisis, KQED News, 11/8/2017