Addressing PA's Opioid Crisis: What the Health Care Team Needs to Know (CME)

Last Updated: Feb 13, 2019

Pennsylvania physicians must take two hours of education in pain management, identification of addiction, or safe opioid prescribing in order to renew their medical license in 2020. Physicians seeking a Pennsylvania medical license for the first time need to take two hours of education in pain management or identification of addiction AND at least two hours of education in safe opioid prescribing.

Note: If you wish to submit verification for licensure purposes, the documentation/certificates you receive after completing this course should be submitted to your respective credentialing board.
PAMED has developed online CME to help physicians meet those 2019-2020 requirements.

Some functionality and features with this CME program will not work in Internet Explorer. Unfortunately, we will not be resolving any bugs or issues for Internet Explorer, as Microsoft announced in 2016 that they are no longer updating IE. For the best user experience and the highest level of security, please use the latest version of Chrome, Safari, or Firefox. 

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1-Opioid-Prescribing-Guidelines-CMESession 1: Opioid Prescribing Guidelines for Non-Cancer Pain

  • Analyze your prescribing practices against new statewide guidelines and
  • Identify when and why to prescribe opioid medications

Click here to take the CME

2-Naloxone-CME Session 2: Naloxone

  • Address the use of Naloxone as an opioid antidote.
  • Review regulatory requirements for prescribing Naloxone to third-party first responders.
  • Assess Naloxone prescribing options and best practices

Click here to take the CME

3-Referral-To-Treatment-CMESession 3: Referral to Treatment


  • Address Substance Use Disorders
  • Explore screening and assessment tools
  • Review intervention strategies
  • Assess best practices in referrals to specialists, rehabilitation services, and community resources

Click here to take the CME


  • Identify how Prescription Drug Monitoring Programs can increase the quality of patient care and how other states are using PDMPs.
  • Describe the operation of Pennsylvania's PDMP
  • Review prescriber and dispenser roles and responsibilities, including when to query the PDMP
  • Discuss third-party access to the PDMP and safeguards to protect the Program data

Click here to take the CME

5-PDMP-CMESession 5: PA-PDMP – Be smart. Be safe. Be sure.

  • Outline a plan to review and incorporate PDMP data into clinical decision making process.
  • Identify potential "red flags" that you should consider in the patient PDMP record
  • Review practice case studies

Click here to take the CME

6-Alternative-Treatments-Opioids-CME Session 6: What Health Care Teams Need to Know –
Alternatives to Opioid Therapy

  • Discuss evidence-based alternatives to opioid therapy for chronic pain management, including non-opioid medications, therapeutic procedures and interventions, physical and manipulative therapy, complementary medicine, and behavioral health.
  • Assess recommendations and incorporate alternative therapies into patient care as applicable to achieve a more multi-modal approach to chronic pain management.

Click here to take the CME


The Pennsylvania Medical Society is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

The Pennsylvania Medical Society designates this enduring material for a maximum of 5.5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits ™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Enduring material posted: Jan. 2, 2019

Enduring material expires: Dec. 31. 2020


Leave a comment
  1. Anne L. Macek | Dec 11, 2018
    Overall, I got more out of it than I expected. Until session 5, audio was hit or miss and at times was torture, especially in the embedded videos: session 4/module 1 “Other State Programs”: for Virginia, Tennessee and NY, audio was terrible and most of the audio was missing for Virginia. In module 2,”Balancing Privacy and Benefits” (Pat Vance) video was soft and totally garbled.
  2. Arthur Omondi | Nov 28, 2018
    Great resource . Hopefully we all get better at preventing and managing opioid addiction.
  3. George L. Danielewski | Nov 14, 2018

    Total abuse of doctors by state bureaucrats...   Over 40 years I have been practicing medicine and prescribing opioids, none of my patients overdosed!!!

    This is "Common Core Education Program" for doctors.   There is nothing in it that is news to me or different from my prescribing opioids.

  4. Heather D. Bittner Fagan | Nov 14, 2018

    time consuming to the point of ridiculous


  5. Debra Taylor | Nov 11, 2018
    It could be much more concise.  Takes far too long to do it.  
  6. Yanhong Zhang | Oct 14, 2018
    great and very helpful!!
  7. Elizabeth Theresa Spaar | Oct 11, 2018
    Allan Segal's comment this is "doctor abuse" is exactly why patients no longer trust their doctors. The CME is fine. It's too bad we as physicians have created an opioid crisis killing thousands of people but I guess we're making up for it by doing this CME.
  8. Allan Segal | Oct 02, 2018

    Total bulls--t. I am retired and only treat immediate relatives. Why must I put up with doing this nonsense to satisfy some liberal feel-gooders demands. Oh, and this is the second time I had to do the child abuse thing.....This is doctor abuse! PMSLIC could give a rats arse about its constituents.

  9. Albert Alley | Sep 26, 2018
  10. Jihad Charabati | Sep 14, 2018
  11. Jihad Charabati | Sep 14, 2018
  12. PAMED Staff | Aug 06, 2018

    Dr Reilly

    Thank you for your note.  PAMED does not download opioid training files to the State. As currently understood, your license renewal application with ask you to confirm completion of the training.  Please maintain your certificates for audit purposes.


  13. Anne F. Reilly | Aug 06, 2018
    Will you forward the certificates to the state board, or do we need to do that? Thanks
  14. PAMED Staff | Jun 01, 2018

    Hi Dr. Chi, you need to complete at least two hours of education in pain management or identification of addiction and at least two hours of education in the practices of prescribing of opioids. This series covers all of that, so, yes, taking this series would be more than enough to count toward your initial PA license requirements.

  15. Yin Chi | May 31, 2018
    By going through the 6 sessions and assessments, would that count as Opioid CE completion for my initial PA license? Thanks.
  16. John Straka | Apr 22, 2018
    time consuming

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