Inappropriate Opioid Prescribing in Oregon's Coordinated Care Organizations

Amanda J. Abraham, Traci Rieckmann, Yifan Gu, Bonnie K. Lind

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Objectives: The objective of this study is to identify demographic and clinical characteristics of patients with a pain diagnosis who fill potentially inappropriate opioid prescriptions within the Oregon Medicaid population. Methods: Using de-identified Oregon Medicaid claims data (2010-2014), a series of logistic regression models was estimated to identify factors associated with receipt of potential inappropriate opioid prescriptions among patients with acute or chronic pain. Analyses included a total of 204,364 records, representing 118,671 unique patients. Results: The percentage of patients with a pain diagnosis filling at least 1 inappropriate opioid prescription decreased over the study period, falling from 32.5% in 2010 to 22.3% in 2014. Multivariate logistic regression results indicated that white and older enrollees were more likely to fill an inappropriate prescription over the study period. The odds of filling an inappropriate opioid prescription were also greater for patients with chronic health conditions, psychiatric disorders, and substance use disorder. Results: were similar for patients diagnosed with either acute or chronic pain, chronic pain only, or acute pain only. Conclusions: Inappropriate opioid prescribing for patients with pain diagnoses decreased over the study period, which stands in stark contrast to other state Medicaid programs. However, in 2014, almost 23% of patients in the Oregon Medicaid program filled at least 1 inappropriate opioid prescription, suggesting additional strategies are needed to further reduce potential inappropriate prescribing. Medicaid programs may consider adopting enhanced prescription drug monitoring program features, enacting pain clinic legislation, and implementing additional prior authorization policies to reduce inappropriate prescribing of opioids.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)293-299
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of addiction medicine
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 1 2020


  • Medicaid
  • opioids
  • prescribing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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