One would think that the massive amount of attention to prescription opioids and the sweeping changes to guidelines and law that have come this year would be enough to raise awareness in the US. But the CDC thinks that is not enough. It recently awarded a task order of $4.8 million to ICF (NASDAQ:ICFI) develop a large scale advertising program.
According to a press release, “ICF will oversee the development of a large-scale, targeted communications campaign designed to raise awareness about the risks associated with prescription opioid abuse. Among its responsibilities under the task order, ICF will oversee development and placement of digital and social media advertisements and maintain an active social media presence for the campaign. Additionally, ICF will create online, mobile-accessible training for providers. ICF also will develop tools, training and outreach to promote adoption of CDC’s Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain by physicians and other healthcare providers. This work supports the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ commitment to address the opioid crisis as a top priority and intensify its efforts to reduce opioid misuse and abuse.”
“Prescription drug overdose affects a vast number of Americans and their families each year,” said Frances Heilig, vice president for ICF International. “Our communications work on the risks of illicit drug use has given us a solid understanding of the impact of prescription opioid abuse on our society. We look forward to working with the CDC to help dissect and communicate this complex issue to increase its visibility across a variety of audiences and reduce the incidence of drug-related deaths in the United States.”
With access to opioids becoming an increasing problem for pain sufferers who do not abuse their medication, one can expect that the onslaught of ads and promotion of the CDC’s restrictive guidelines will simple amplify the problems many face around the country.