Pain Management and Opioids: Balancing Risks and Benefits



The misuse of extended-release and long-acting (ER/LA) opioids is a major public health problem. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported the following:

  • From 1999 to 2016 more than 630,000 people died from drug overdoses.
  • 115 Americans die every day from an opioid overdose.

The CO*RE/ASAM Pain Management and Opioids: Balancing Risks and Benefits course addresses this public health crisis. This comprehensive course was developed by renowned experts from Collaborative for REMS Education (CO*RE) and incorporates all six units outlined in US FDA Blueprint for safe opioid prescribing. The updated course also provides necessary context for safe opioid prescribing by discussing biopsychosocial aspects of pain, the newest clinical guidelines on the treatment of chronic pain, and state policies about prescribing opioids.

How to Take a FREE Course

Review safe prescribing habits and examine the difference between opioid medications to help ensure patient safety and effective pain management.

Online Course

Check out the Online Course which is available 24/7 to accommodate busy schedules. 

Upcoming Courses

Check out ASAM's CME Events or CO*RE Partner Events to find upcoming live courses or webinars.

Over 6,500 learners have participated in the ER/LA opioid continuing education activities provided by ASAM. If you are interested in hosting a course for your organization, visit Host a Course.

Who Should Attend

The intended audience is all prescribers of ER/LA opioids which includes: pain specialists, primary care physicians, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, advanced practice nurses, dentists, addiction medicine physicians, psychiatrists and other physicians and clinicians.

Learning Objectives

  • Accurately assess patients with pain for consideration of an opioid trial.
  • Establish realistic goals for pain management and restoration of function.
  • Initiate opioid treatment (IR and ER/LA) safely and judiciously, maximizing efficacy while minimizing risks.
  • Monitor and re-evaluate treatment continuously; discontinue safely when appropriate.
  • Counsel patients and caregivers about use, misuse, abuse, diversion, and overdose,
  • Educate patients about safe storage and disposal of opioids.
  • Demonstrate working knowledge and ability to access general and specific information about opioids, especially those used in your practice.

*This course is not intended to advocate for the use of ER/LA opioids, but to ensure proper education about safe prescribing practices should a medical provider determine that ER/LA opioids are the best course of treatment. 


The American Society of Addiction Medicine is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

ASAM designates this live activity for a maximum of 2 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

ASAM designates this enduring material for a maximum of 2.5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

This course has been approved by the American Board of Addiction Medicine (ABAM). Physicians enrolled in the ABAM Maintenance of Certification (MOC) Program can apply a maximum of 2.5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™.


Presented by ASAM, a member of the Collaborative on REMS Education (CO*RE), 10 member-led healthcare organizations working together to improve pain management and prevent adverse outcomes.

RPC Commercial Support Disclosure Statement

This educational activity is supported by an independent educational grant from the ER/LA Opioid Analgesic REMS Program Companies. Please see this link for a listing of the member companies. This activity is intended to be fully compliant with the ER/LA Opioid Analgesic REMS education requirements issued by the US FDA Blueprint.