The Effect of Prescription Drug Monitoring Programs on Opioid Utilization in Medicare
Buchmueller, Thomas C., and Colleen Carey. 2018. "The Effect of Prescription Drug Monitoring Programs on Opioid Utilization in Medicare." American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, 10(1): 77-112.
The misuse of prescription opioids has become a serious epidemic in the United States. In response, states have implemented Prescription Drug Monitoring Programs (PDMPs), which record a patient's opioid prescribing history. While few providers participated in early systems, states have recently begun to require providers to access the PDMP under certain circumstances. We find that "must access" PDMPs significantly reduce measures of misuse in Medicare Part D. In contrast, we find that PDMPs without such provisions have no effect. We find stronger effects when providers are required to access the PDMP under broad circumstances, not only when they are suspicious.