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PDFWAC 246-918-835

Treatment planAcute nonoperative pain.

The physician assistant shall comply with the requirements in this section when prescribing opioids for acute nonoperative pain.
(1) The physician assistant should consider prescribing nonopioids as the first line of pain control in patients unless not clinically appropriate in accordance with the provisions of WAC 246-918-820.
(2) The physician assistant, or their designee, shall conduct queries of the PMP in accordance with the provisions of WAC 246-918-935.
(3) If the physician assistant prescribes opioids for effective pain control, such prescription must not be in a greater quantity than needed for the expected duration of pain severe enough to require opioids. A three-day supply or less will often be sufficient. The physician assistant shall not prescribe beyond a seven-day supply without clinical documentation in the patient record to justify the need for such a quantity.
(4) The physician assistant shall reevaluate the patient who does not follow the expected course of recovery, and reconsider the continued use of opioids or whether tapering or discontinuing opioids is clinically indicated.
(5) Follow-up visits for pain control must include objectives or metrics to be used to determine treatment success if opioids are to be continued. This may include:
(a) Change in pain level;
(b) Change in physical function;
(c) Change in psychosocial function; and
(d) Additional indicated diagnostic evaluations.
(6) If a prescription results in the patient receiving a combination of opioids with a sedative medication listed in WAC 246-918-920, such prescribing must be in accordance with WAC 246-918-920.
(7) Long-acting or extended release opioids are not indicated for acute nonoperative pain.
(8) Medication assisted treatment medications must not be discontinued when treating acute pain, except as consistent with the provisions of WAC 246-918-925.
(9) If the physician assistant elects to treat a patient with opioids beyond the six-week time period of acute nonoperative pain, the physician assistant shall document in the patient record that the patient is transitioning from acute pain to subacute pain. Rules governing the treatment of subacute pain in WAC 246-918-845 and 246-918-850 shall apply.
[Statutory Authority: RCW 18.71.017, 18.71.800, 18.71A.800 and 2017 c 297. WSR 18-23-061, § 246-918-835, filed 11/16/18, effective 1/1/19.]
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