Tennessee Pharmacists Association
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has published its 56-page proposed 2016 Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain and is accepting public comment through January 13, 2016. Instructions for submitting comments are provided below.

The CDC Guideline will not be a federal regulation; adherence to the Guideline will be voluntary. It was developed in response to concerns about differing recommendations in existing guidelines, as well as primary care providers’ assertions that they receive insufficient training in prescribing opioid pain relievers. The purpose of the Guideline is to provide recommendations regarding prescribing (initiation or continuation) of opioids for chronic pain; opioid selection, dosage, duration, follow-up, and discontinuation; and assessment of risk and addressing harms of opioid use. The Guideline is intended to be used by primary care providers who are treating patients with chronic pain (i.e., pain lasting longer than 3 months or past the time of normal tissue healing) in outpatient settings.

Guideline recommendations focus on the prescribing of opioid pain medication for patients 18 and older with chronic pain outside of palliative and end-of-life care; they are not intended to apply to patients in treatment for active cancer.

Additional Information:

  • Proposed Guidelines (PDF)
  • Fact Sheet: New CDC Opioid Prescribing Guidelines – Improving the Way Opioids are Prescribed for Safer Chronic Pain Treatment
  • Background Documents and Comments Received
  • Federal Register Notice
  • Comments may be submitted online at www.regulations.gov or mailed to: National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 4770 Buford Highway NE., Mailstop F-63, Atlanta, GA 30341, Attn: Docket CDC-2015-0112. All submissions must include the agency name and Docket Number (CDC-2015-0112). All relevant comments received will be posted online without change, including any personal information provided.