Dr. Gerald Cochran in the Social Work Academic Program and PittPharmacy faculty members Amy L. Seybert, PharmD and Ralph E. Tarter, PhD have received a grant through the National Institute on Drug Abuse in the National Institutes of Health for the study Perscription opioid misuse: Pharmacist-delivered intervention at point of service.

Opioid medication misuse and overdose have reached epidemic proportions in the US, costing an estimated $56 billion annually. One greatly under-utilized resource for intervention is community pharmacy. Community pharmacies are primary locations where patients fill opioid medications that are often diverted and misused. Pharmacists are ranked among the most trusted healthcare professionals in the nation and have expressed great interest in helping patients who misuse opioid medications; however, these professionals also report a lack of training and resources necessary to effectively do so. Deploying readily scalable opioid misuse and overdose prevention interventions within community pharmacy settings potentially has the capacity to be applied in thousands of locations.

The current small scale single-blinded randomized controlled study will build onĀ  preliminary studies by manualizing and examining the feasibility, acceptability, and clinical effect for the Brief Intervention Medication Therapy Management (BI-MTM) model. BI-MTM is a multicomponent community pharmacy-based intervention. BI-MTM is designed to: (1) promote opioid medication regimen adherence, (2) reduce opioid medication misuse, (3) connect participants with patient navigation (a chronic condition care model) to increase self-management of health conditions that increase risk for misuse, and (4) provide naloxone rescue training referrals.

Seybert is an associate professor and Chair of the Department of Pharmacy and Therapeutics at the University of Pittsburgh School of Pharmacy.

Tarter is director of the NIDA-funded Center for Education and Drug Abuse Research (CEDAR) and professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences at the University of Pittsburgh School of Pharmacy.

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