Commission on Health and Safety and Workers' Compensation

December 14, 2012

Lachlan Taylor
(510) 622-3959

California Commission on Health and Safety and Workers' Compensation Releases
Study on Identifying Risky Opioid-Prescribing Practices and Guidelines

OAKLAND -- The Commission on Health and Safety and Workers' Compensation (CHSWC) is pleased to announce that the DRAFT report "Identifying Risky Opioid Prescribing Practices" and a related DRAFT Memo "Evaluation of Opioid Prescribing Guidelines Using AGREE II" have been released for posting and public comment.

In California and nationally, policymakers and individual physicians are striving to attain an elusive goal: balancing adequate pain control while minimizing the risk associated with prescription pain medication.  Overdoses due to prescription opioid medication are leading to an increasing number of emergency department visits. The report assesses screening for higher-risk prescribing practices within the workers’ compensation system, as well as information on opioid prescribing that can be used to inform the development of screening criteria for assessing opioid- prescribing risk. The ten-page memo summarizes additional evaluation of guidelines for the use of opioids to treat pain that were not included in the main report.

CHSWC, created by the workers' compensation reform legislation of 1993, is charged with examining the health and safety and workers' compensation systems in California and recommending administrative or legislative modifications to improve their operation. CHSWC was established to conduct a continuing examination of the workers' compensation system and of the state's activities to prevent industrial injuries and occupational diseases and to examine those programs in other states.

Information about CHSWC is available at and draft reports can be found at Information may also be obtained by writing to CHSWC at 1515 Clay Street, 17th Floor, Oakland, California, 94612; by calling (510) 622-3959; by faxing a request to (510) 622-3265; or by email at

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