Opioid Painkiller Dependence Alliance (OPDA)

The Opioid Painkiller Dependence Alliance is a unique collaboration of pain and addiction specialists and patient groups committed to raising awareness of opioid painkiller problems and campaigning for dedicated services. Become an affiliate member and make our voice stronger.

The issue

The figures are alarming. According to the British Medical Journal, nearly half the population have a diagnosis of chronic pain (over three months of pain). Over ten million people annually are in receipt of an opioid painkiller (OP) prescription at a cost of over £400m across UK health services. Over the past decade prescriptions for OP have risen by 400%. But while OP use has risen dramatically alongside a mountain of clinical and anecdotal evidence about the potential harms, there is no standardised and universally applied risk assessment of patients about to embark on a course of OP nor regular monitoring. And if problems arise, no network of dedicated services to which a GP or pain specialist can refer. This is a public health disaster hidden in plain sight.


Government launches landmark review into prescription drug addiction (Jan '18)

The growing problem of dependence and addiction to prescription drugs is set to form the basis of an independent review announced in January 2018 by the Government, as stark figures show one patient in eleven was prescribed a potentially addictive drug last year. Public Health Minister, Steve Brine, has commissioned Public Health England (PHE) to undertake a thorough evidence review along with recommendations on how to addr...

"Not in the script ..."

An article exploring various aspects related to prescribing and using opioid painkillers.