Once those at risk have been identified, FCH’s medical and behavioral health case managers will reach out to the employees and confidentially discuss their prescription use and treatment options, which may include alternative pain management or counseling. The entire program is confidential but gives employers more tools to help employees in need without specifically identifying them.
“This program is aimed at reducing opioid misuse and abuse in the workplace, which can affect productivity, absenteeism, health, and safety,” Robinson says. “Following that launch, we started receiving inquiries from employers—who weren’t our clients—asking how they could get this report. That gave us the final push to launch this program in an effort to support our community. We created a simpler screening opioid use report that we could offer to community employers with at least 200 employees, which would only require pharmacy claims from the PBM. The results contain no employee names or identifying information.”
This model is applicable to any health plan or TPA, according to Robinson. To conduct this four-measure screening report on workforce prescription opioid use, FCH needs the health plan/TPA to provide a signed Data Use Agreement and the PBM to provide the de-identified pharmacy claims extract with just seven claim fields.
While this is a program for the Seattle region, it’s a unique initiative that could provide a blueprint for other health care organizations aiming to tackle this problem throughout the country, according to Robinson.
“Depending on the response from the community, this program could be rolled out to other communities and other states,” he says.