Resources to Address the Opioid Epidemic

American Academy of Pediatrics 

Resources to Address the Opioid Epidemic


Physician Education

PediaLink Module – Acute Pain Management: Changes and Challenges
The main goals of this course are to increase the number of pediatricians who understand how to assess and treat pain as well as how to identify patients at risk for misusing opioid medications. Case studies presented in this course provide the opportunity to apply the pain screening and management techniques to patient and family case situations.

PediaLink Module ­– Chronic Pain and the Opioid Crisis
This course reviews the types of chronic pain pediatricians are likely to see in their patients. The role of opioids in the treatment of chronic pain and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommendations are discussed. This course is free.

Online Course
Research-Based Clinical Strategies to Prevent and Address Adolescent Substance Use and Prescription Medication Misuse—Being Part of the Solution
The AAP was part of a coalition of medical professional organizations that developed this free online course. It is offered through two 30-minute sections and encourages prevention strategies for adolescents reporting no substance use and offers guidance for how to address substance use at all levels—from mild, to moderate, to severe. It also discusses safe prescribing practices and evidence-based treatments for teens with a substance use disorder. Brief clinician videos provide insights and tips to incorporate into practice.  

Pediatric Waiver Training
Pediatricians must complete 8 hours of training and apply for a waiver to prescribe buprenorphine, a partial opioid agonist, to treat opioid use disorders in general medical settings. There are several options for training:

Webinar Recordings
With funding from the American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry, the AAP held a webinar series on preventing, identifying, and treating opioid dependence. These webinar recordings are available at Take special note of the "Take Home Points" document that accompanies each webinar.

EQIPP Course - Substance Use Screening: Brief Intervention, Referral to Treatment
This online course will help you identify and close gaps in your practice related to SBIRT using practical tools while earning CME and MOC Part4 credit. AAP members get access to all EQIPP courses as a benefit of membership.

AAP Pediatrics for the 21st Century (Peds 21) – Video Recordings
This symposium, Opioids Through the Ages: Caring for Children and Families in the Wake of the Opioid Crisis, from the 2019 AAP National Conference & Exhibition examines the impact of opioids on child health from the prenatal period through adolescence, providing pediatricians with knowledge, tools, and resources to help patients and their families. 


#NavigatingNAS Campaign
The AAP Section on Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine’s TECaN Group (Trainees and Early Career Neonatologists) has engaged in a national effort to empower and educate physicians about Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS). The #NavigatingNAS Campaign features 4 quarters, each devoted to a different aspect of the continuum of NAS. Each quarter provides educational materials for clinical practice and resources for families in addition to webinars, podcasts, and social media outreach.

Medicine Abuse Project
The AAP is a partner in this campaign, which was launched in 2012 by The Partnership at The Medicine Abuse Project aims to curb the abuse of medicine. The Web site houses a suite of comprehensive resources tailored to parents, health professionals, educators, and community leaders, to help them learn about and address the problem.


State and National Fact Sheets
Access state-by-state and national fact sheets that examine the intersection of the opioid epidemic, child welfare systems, and child health. These fact sheets also offer policy solutions that can support vulnerable children and families at both the state and federal level.

Addressing the Opioid Epidemic: Joint Principles
The AAP and 5 other medical organizations adopted these joint principles that set out guidelines to expand access to treatment and increase research into substance use disorder (SUD) prevention and treatment. It also calls for a public health approach to SUDs that will reduce stigma while continuing to ensure comprehensive pain management for patients.

Poster on Safe Storage and Disposal of Medications
Available in both English and Spanish, this poster is meant to be hung in the pediatric office for families to see. It is designed specifically so that local resources can be written into the empty white space. The poster was disseminated at the 2017 National Conference and Exhibition, discussed in an October 2017 AAP News article.

AAP Public Service Announcement on Medication
In this public service announcement from the AAP, Dr. Shelly Flais explains how to protect children by safely storing medicine at home. Physicians can share the PSA on practice websites or social media by using this code: 

<iframe width="854" height="480" src="" frameborder="0" allow="autoplay; encrypted-media" allowfullscreen></iframe>  

The video is available for viewing on YouTube.

American Medical Association (AMA) Opioid Task Force
The AAP has been a member and active participant in the AMA's Opioid Task Force. The AAP is involved in the task force's efforts to:

  • educate physicians about safe opioid prescribing practices;
  • educate state policymakers about the importance of effective prescription drug monitoring programs (PDMPs);
  • educate physicians about the importance of using PDMPs; and
  • encourage widespread community access of naloxone.

The AMA Opioid Task Force has produced the following fact sheets:

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