Management of Opioid Use Disorder in the Emergency Department: A White Paper Prepared for AAEM

Over 2 million Americans misuse prescription or illicitly-obtained opioids, and opioid overdose deaths rose to a record 47,600 in 2017, representing a nearly 600% increase in 18 years. (NCHS 2019, NIH 2019) Because patients with opioid use disorder (OUD) are often socioeconomically and functionally marginalized, the primary point of contact with healthcare for many is the emergency department (ED). Emergency clinicians are therefore ideally positioned to address the current opioid addiction and overdose epidemic by preventing the development of OUD, identifying patients affected by OUD, and initiating the most effective treatments and harm reduction practices.

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References and Literature Grading (PDF)