The use of opioid medications for pain management continues to increase, generating an inevitable association with abuse and addiction. Government officials and pharmaceutical professionals alike are in need of risk mitigation approaches (Katz, 2008). The Abuse Deterrent Access Act of 2018 requires Medicare and Medicaid to report to Congress the availability of abuse-deterrent opioid pain treatments. The bill is meant to decrease the amount of barriers for their enrollees (Carter, 2018).
“The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has estimated that in 2016, the most recent year for which complete data are available, over 42,249 Americans died from opioid overdoses, the most of any year on record. More than 2.1 million Americans had an opioid use disorder (addiction) in 2016, with economic costs from the epidemic estimated to be as high as $504 billion dollars (Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health, 2018).” Pharmaceutical companies have responded to this need through more stringent abuse-deterrent formulations and studies.