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Controlled Substance Policy

Our policy on controlled substance monitoring is a list of practices and procedures followed by providers at Well Nourished when prescribing and monitoring medications classified as controlled substances. These substances, regulated by government authorities, have the potential for abuse, dependence, and misuse. Monitoring policies are put in place to ensure safe and appropriate prescribing practices and to minimize the risks associated with these medications.

Our policy may change based on relevant laws, guidelines, and best practices to ensure safe and responsible prescribing practices for controlled substances in the context of mental health treatment. If this occurs, an updated policy will be provided. 

Each patient will be asked to sign this policy as part of this initial intake. If you have any questions regarding this policy, contact the office manager to discuss further. 

In person visits are required at least every 3-4 months to ensure compliance to treatment plan if prescribed a controlled substance. More frequent follow up may be determined by the provider. 

Key elements of our controlled substance monitoring policy include:

  1. Initial assessment: A thorough evaluation of the patient’s mental health condition, medical history, and treatment goals before considering the use of controlled substances. This assessment helps determine if medication is appropriate and if there are any contraindications or potential risks.
  2. Informed consent: Discussion of the risks, benefits, and alternatives of using controlled substances with the patient, ensuring they have a clear understanding of the prescribed medication and its potential effects. Informed consent is obtained before initiating treatment.
  3. Prescription monitoring programs: Utilization of the prescription drug monitoring program (PDMP) to track a patient’s prescription history for controlled substances. The PDMP provides information about the medications the patient has been prescribed, aiding in the identification of potential misuse or overuse.
  4. Treatment agreements: Each provider may implement their own treatment agreements or contracts with patients who are prescribed controlled substances. These agreements outline expectations, responsibilities, and guidelines for the patient’s medication use, including topics such as compliance, medication storage, follow-up appointments, and potential consequences for non-compliance.
  5. Regular follow-up appointments: Close monitoring of patients receiving controlled substances through regular follow-up appointments. These appointments allow for ongoing assessment of treatment effectiveness, monitoring for side effects or adverse reactions, evaluation of the patient’s overall mental health, and identification of any signs of misuse or diversion.
  6. Urine drug screening: Providers may use urine drug screening as a tool to monitor the patient’s medication adherence and detect any unauthorized substance use. Periodic urine drug tests can help confirm the presence of prescribed medications, ensure proper dosing, and identify the use of illicit substances or other non-prescribed medications.
  7. Communication with other healthcare providers: Providers may collaborate and share relevant information with other healthcare providers involved in the patient’s care, such as primary care physicians, to ensure coordinated and comprehensive monitoring of controlled substance use.
  8. Compliance with legal and regulatory requirements: Providers at Well Nourished adhere to local, state, and federal laws and regulations governing the prescribing and monitoring of controlled substances. This includes maintaining accurate documentation, adhering to prescription limits and duration guidelines, and complying with reporting requirements.