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Better Prescribing, Better Treatment

Better Prescribing, Better Treatment

Better Prescribing, Better Treatment logo

The Better Prescribing, Better Treatment (BPBT) program is a peer-to-peer, clinician-driven quality improvement program that promotes safe, appropriate prescribing to curb opioid misuse and overdose. The program was developed in partnership with the Washington State Hospital Association and the state Health Care Authority in lieu of proposals seeking to implement mandatory prior authorization for all opioid prescriptions. At the same time, the legislature was considering a blunt statutory 7-day pill limit that would have been problematic for appropriate patient care and potentially result in disciplinary action for well-meaning clinicians.

BPBT was launched to focus on quality improvement rather than punitive regulatory oversight. This effort has protected the medical profession from further problematic legislative and/or regulatory interference, while significantly improving opioid prescribing behaviors and resulting patient care and outcomes.

BPBT is a component of the state opioid response plan, and is a collaboration between the Washington State Medical Association, Washington State Hospital Association, Washington State Department of Health, and the Washington State Health Care Authority.

The BPBT program promotes safe prescribing in two ways:

  • Washington State Opioid Prescribing Reports: Each quarter, the WSMA sends prescribers in the state an opioid prescribing feedback report. Using data from the state prescription monitoring program (PMP), the report shows how their opioid prescribing practices compare to others in their hospital, health system, or medical group, as well as within their specialty. To participate, prescribers are opted-in by their organization's CMO.
  • Opioid Management Coaching Program: In partnership with the University of Washington Six Building Blocks program, the WSMA offers coaching services on improving systems in primary care clinics to deliver more evidence-based chronic pain care and opioid management. Contact for more information.

Washington State Opioid Prescribing Reports

Results driven

Better Prescribing, Better Treatment's data-driven and data-sharing approach is working. The initiative, now encompassing 15,000+ prescribers with 60 hospitals, health systems, and medical groups in the state. Collectively, reducing opioid prescriptions above guidelines by 40% since the program's inception in late 2017.

To opt in

If you prescribe opioids in Washington state and your organization has yet to enroll to receive Washington State Opioid Prescribing Reports, your CMO can email to enroll. Minimal resources and administrative time are required.

Opioid Management Coaching Program

Utilizing the UW Six Building Blocks Framework, there are a variety of ways we can offer support in opioid improvement work:

Service Description Timeline & Commitment
Comprehensive Six Building Blocks Program Implement a comprehensive opioid management system-based improvement, with guidance from a practice facilitator. 9–15 months
Six Building Blocks Consult Complete a clinic-wide 6BBs self-assessment that leads to the development of a recommended action plan, with guidance from a practice facilitator. Be connected to supporting resources for opioid management. 1–3 months
Shared Learning Calls Actively participate in periodic and facilitated conversations amongst clinics engaged in opioid management improvement work using the 6BB approach. Monthly 1-hour calls
Technical Assistance (TA) Ad-hoc support and TA in opioid management areas. (i.e. policy alignment with WA 1427, workflow development, developing a tracking & monitoring system) Ad-hoc
Targeted Education Educational opportunities in opioid management areas. Ad-hoc
Intro to the Six Building Blocks Introduction to the Six Building Blocks approach and tour of website resources to support opioid management improvements. One time with follow-up check-in calls

Frequently asked questions and next steps

Get answers to your questions about report development and impact, or actionable next steps in the Washington State Opioid Reports FAQ Section (linked in the Opioid Management Resources below). Contact the physician lead, Nathan Schlicher, MD, at, for clinical guidance on the Washington State Opioid Prescribing Reports. Contact the program manager, Monica Salgaonkar, MHA at, to join or find out more about the opioid management coaching program.

Opioid Management Resources

  • May 2020 Webinar on the Washington State Opioid Reports
    Learn more about the Washington State Opioid Prescribing Reports program and the Six Building Blocks program. This webinar was originally broadcasted on May 15, 2020. Webinar presenters were Dr. Nathan Schlicher, BPBT physician lead; Jeb Shepard, WSMA director of policy and regulatory affairs; Dr. Laura-Mae Baldwin, UW Family Medicine and the Six Building Blocks program; and Dr. Michael Parchman, Kaiser Permanente Health Research Institute and the Six Building Blocks program.
  • Complying with State Opioid Regulations through Improved Prescribing Practices – WSMA members only—sign-in required
    WSMA's free one-hour on-demand webinar can help clinicians understand how to comply with the new requirements. Completion of the webinar will fulfill the new state requirement for continuing medical education on opioid prescribing. This activity has been approved for AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™. After completing the activity, learners should be able to:
    • Review the Washington state opioid prescribing requirement.
    • Outline strategies to comply with specific requirements of opioid prescribing rules.
    • Detail additional resources available for up-to-date evidence-based information on opioid prescribing.
  • UW Six Building Blocks
  • Self-Service How-to Guide for the Six Building Blocks Program
  • WSU Interprofessional Team-Based Opioid Education

Opioid News

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