1 in 12 injured workers addicted to prescription meds

1 in 12 injured workers addicted to prescription meds

A new study tells us that one in 12 injured workers’ are addicted to pain killers after being prescribed the medication by physicians. But the doctors are under the spotlight in this case for lack of follow up, leading to the potential for addiction, CBS News is reporting.

The study was conducted by the Workers’ Compensation Research Institute and it found that many doctors simply do not follow up with injured people. Medical treatments were not being followed, according to the study.

Of the most popular medications that were considered addicting, Oxycontin and Vicodin were the most frequently prescribed.

“This study addressed a very serious issue: how often doctors followed recommended treatment guidelines for monitoring injured workers under their care, who are longer-term users of narcotics,” Dr. Richard Victor, the institute’s executive director, said in a press release.

The study evaluated nearly 300,000 workers’ compensation claims and the prescription medication prescribed to injured individuals on benefits.  Incredibly, nearly 1.1 million prescriptions were given as a result of those workers’ comp claims.

“This study will help public officials, employers, and other stakeholders understand as well as balance providing appropriate care to injured workers while reducing unnecessary risks to patients and costs to employers,” Victor added.

It’s no secret that painkillers can lead to serious long-term addiction including overdose death. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say that overdosing on painkiller medication is up nearly 300% since 1999.