To mitigate the risk of addiction from prescribed opioid pain medication, the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has called for the development of better technological devices for pain treatment. To this end, the FDA has announced an opioid crisis product challenge.
In a press release posted on the FDA official website on May 30, 2018, the agency announced that it was launching an innovation challenge aimed toward bolstering the development of technological devices which can help treat pain, thereby circumventing the risk of substance abuse which accompanies even properly prescribed opioid painkiller medication.
According to Scott Gottlieb, the Commissioner of the FDA, there are many technological advances which can help mitigate the unfortunate and widespread consequences of the opioid crisis. By using the opportunities afforded by technology, Gottlieb hopes to help Americans ensure they receive adequate treatment for pain without undue concern regarding addiction.
The agency has called for developers to submit proposals for a variety of potential products for the treatment of pain, including products aimed toward identifying individuals who might be particularly susceptible to addiction. By identifying those who might be at greater risk of substance abuse, it can be ensured that those who might require addiction recovery treatment are able to access it.
The FDA also called for the submission of products which may assist in the treatment of opioid use disorder, as well as products which can help ensure that legally prescribed and distributed opioids are not diverted from their intended destinations and recipients.
In order to facilitate the development of better products to combat the opioid crisis, the FDA is issuing a challenge to developers. The window for submission runs from June 1, 2018 to September 30, 2018, and those applicants who are accepted will enjoy “enhanced interactions” with the agency as they work to develop the best possible product to help ensure individuals are able to access the addiction recovery treatment they deserve.