Opioid Prescribing Practices of Neurosurgeons: Analysis of Medicare Part D

Syed I. Khalid, Owoicho Adogwa, Daniel T. Lilly, Shyam A. Desai, Victoria D. Vuong, Ankit I. Mehta, Joseph Cheng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective: The Centers for Disease Control have declared that the United States is amidst a continuing opioid epidemic, with drug overdose−related death tripling between 1999 and 2014. Among the 47,055 overdose-related deaths that occurred in 2014, 28,647 (60.9%) of them involved an opioid. Methods: The Part D Prescriber Public Use File, which is based on beneficiaries enrolled in the Medicare Part D prescription drug program, was used to query information on prescription drug events incurred by Medicare beneficiaries with a Part D prescription drug plan from 31 June 2014 to 30 June 2015. Only those providers with the specialty description of neurosurgeon, as reported on the provider's Part B claims, were included in this study. Results: A total of 271,502 beneficiaries, accounting for 971,581 claims and 22,152,689 day supplies of medication, accounted for the $52,956,428.40 paid by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services for medication that the 4085 neurosurgeons submitted to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Part D program in the 2014 calendar year. During the same year, 402,767 (41.45%) claims for 158,749 (58.47%) beneficiaries accounted for 6,458,624 (29.16%) of the day supplies of medications and $13,962,630.11 (26.37%) of the total money spent by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Part D that year. Nationwide, the ratio of opioid claims to total Medicare Part D beneficiaries was 1.48. No statistically significant regional differences were found. Conclusions: The opioid misuse epidemic is a complex and national issue with patterns of prescription not significantly different between regions. All neurosurgeons must be cognizant of their prescribing practices so as to best support the resolution of this public health crisis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e31-e38
JournalWorld neurosurgery
Volume112
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2018
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Epidemiology
  • Medicare
  • Part D

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology

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    Khalid, S. I., Adogwa, O., Lilly, D. T., Desai, S. A., Vuong, V. D., Mehta, A. I., & Cheng, J. (2018). Opioid Prescribing Practices of Neurosurgeons: Analysis of Medicare Part D. World neurosurgery, 112, e31-e38. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.wneu.2017.12.011