AAOA and PA Foundation’s Pledge to Pause Initiative Encourages Future Prescribers to Commit to Educating Patients About Prescription Opioid Safety  

DENVER, Colo., May 20, 2019 – Physician assistant (PA) students attending the American Academy of PAs (AAPA) 2019 Conference in Denver are joining the national Pledge to Pause effort by committing to take a moment to pause and talk with their patients before prescribing an opioid medication. Pledge to Pause, a collaboration between Allied Against Opioid Abuse (AAOA) and the PA Foundation, reminds providers of the importance of engaging with and educating their patients every time an opioid is prescribed.

“As PA students prepare to become licensed prescribers, they are looking for ways to get involved and help reverse the harmful trend of prescription opioid addiction across the country,” said Lynette Sappe-Watkins, Executive Director of the PA Foundation. “Pledge to Pause provides a platform for PA students to take an active role in ensuring their future patients understand prescription opioid safety, which includes knowing their rights, risks and responsibilities associated with these medicines.”

The Pledge to Pause campaign was first launched at the AAPA 2018 Conference to engage and mobilize PA students. Over the last year, Pledge to Pause has grown, enabling current and future prescribers to commit to taking time to talk to patients and caregivers about available pain treatment options, the risks associated with prescription opioids when they are prescribed, and their responsibility to safely store and promptly dispose of leftover medications.

“Pledge to Pause is helping to address the significant gap in patient education related to the safe use, storage and disposal of prescription opioids,” said John Parker, Senior Vice President of Communications for the Healthcare Distribution Alliance, the founding member of AAOA. “As AAOA, the PA Foundation and our other partners continue to make a meaningful difference in raising awareness around preventing the misuse and abuse of prescription opioids, we hope patients, providers, pharmacists and the public will join us in our pledge to combatthis national crisis.”

To learn more about AAOA’s Pledge to Pause, visit www.AgainstOpioidAbuse.org/pledge-to-pause. Additional online resources to help patients, providers, pharmacists and the public understand the importance of safe and proper use, storage and disposal of prescription opioids are available at www.AgainstOpioidAbuse.org/Act.

For press inquiries, contact press@againstopioidabuse.org.

About Allied Against Opioid Abuse
Allied Against Opioid Abuse is a national education and awareness initiative to help prevent abuse and misuse of prescription opioids. Founded by the Healthcare Distribution Alliance, the initiative is a collaborative effort with diverse partners across the pharmaceutical supply chain, as well as organizations that are experts in public health and healthcare, including Alliance for Aging Research, American Pharmacists Association, American Physical Therapy Association, BeMedWise, Caregiver Action Network, Gerontological Society of America, Healthcare Leadership Council, HealthyWomen, Men’s Health Network, Mental Health America, National Alliance of State Pharmacy Associations, National Association of Directors of Nursing Administration, National Association of States United for Aging and Disabilities, National Community Pharmacists Association, National Transitions of Care Coalition and the PA Foundation. Our goal is to contribute to solving the opioid crisis in a meaningful way by educating patients about their rights, risks and responsibilities. To learn more, visit www.AgainstOpioidAbuse.org or follow us on Twitter: @AAOA_Tweets.