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Pain Relief Act & Non-Cancer Pain Management
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Non-Cancer Pain Management

Required 5 Hours of CE Available Online

As noted below, the 2012 amendment to the Pain Relief Act resulted in the New Mexico Board of Nursing requirement for non-cancer pain management (NCPM) continuing education (CE) for license renewal. NMNPC recorded the five presentations on NCPM offered at our 2017 spring conference and offer those recordings as an online independent learning CE program for those unable to attend the conference. The New Mexico Board of Nursing recognizes this as meeting the NCPM CE requirement for NPs. Click here to purchase access to the online program.

This program is approved for 5.0 contact hours of continuing education (which includes 5.0 hours of pharmacology) by the American Association of Nurse Practitioners. Program ID 17052602. This program was planned in accordance with AANP CE Standards and Policies.

If you have any questions, please email us at contact@NMNPC.org. 

What You Need to Know

In 2012, the New Mexico legislature amended the Pain Relief Act. Following the amendment, NPs and other providers had widespread questions and misunderstandings regarding the new practice and licensure requirements. Many of those questions and misunderstandings centered around the requirement for non-cancer pain management (NCPM) continuing education (CE). Other provisions in the amended Act also raised questions. In response, NMNPC actively sought answers to some of the questions raised by our members and other advanced practice nurses (APRNs). This page outlines the information we gathered. To summarize, we suggest that to fully understand and meet the requirements in the amendment APRNs should:

  • Read the amendment to the Pain Relief Act (it's short).
  • Become familiar with the requirements in the amended nursing Rule 9 (the original changes became effective November 20, 2012 but other changes have occured since then).
  • Obtain the required NCPM CE before applying for license renewal. You can purchase access to the NMNPC online independent learning CE program covering the required content at our online store.
  • Be sure your Prescription Monitoring Program (PMP) registration is active before applying for renewal of your controlled substance license.
  • Learn how to participate in PMP inquiry and reporting by reviewing the instructions and manual.
  • Become familiar with the New Mexico Board of Pharmacy (NMBOP) rules on prescribing controlled substances.
To jump directly to more information, click on the links below:

Background Summary

  • During the 2012 New Mexico legislative session, legislators passed Senate Bill 215, amending the 1999 Pain Relief Act.
  • The amendment created the Prescription Drug Misuse and Overdose Prevention and Pain Management Advisory Council (hereafter called the Advisory Council). The Advisory Council:
    • Includes representatives from statewide professional organizations (including NMNPC) and other health care stakeholders.
    • Meets at least quarterly and is administratively attached to the Department of Health (DOH).
    • Reviews prescription drug misuse, overdose prevention, and current pain management practices in New Mexico.
    • Reviews prescription drug misuse, overdose prevention, pain management standards, and educational efforts at the national level.
  • The amendment also directed licensing boards to develop NCPM CE requirements for the respective health care providers under each board's jurisdiction who hold a federal Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) registration and licensure to prescribe opioids (Controlled Substance License).
  • Other rules developed by affected boards require licensees to register and participate in the PMP.
  • The amendment to the Act resulted in action by the NMBOP to institute additional rules governing controlled substance prescribing.

What Are the NMBON Requirements?

  • The New Mexio Board of Nursing (NMBON) adopted an amended Rules Part 9: Management of Chronic Pain With Controlled Substances that took effect on November 20, 2012. It applies to all advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) licensed by the NMBON who hold DEA registration and are licensed to prescribe opioids (Controlled Substance License).
  • Changes in Rule 9 included:
    • New governing "rules" that replaced the previous "guidelines" for how the NMBON determines whether a health care practitioner’s prescriptive practices are consistent with the appropriate treatment of pain.
    • Requirements that all APRNs must register with the Board of Pharmacy PMP and become regular participants in PMP inquiry and reporting activities.
    • A requirement for 5 hours of non-cancer pain management CE every 2 years. Specific topic areas required for the 5 hours of NCPM CE include:

      • Review of the rule (16.12.9 NMAC - Rule 9) for management of non-cancer pain.
      • Understanding of the pharmacology and risks of controlled substances.
      • Basic awareness of the problems of abuse, addiction and diversion.
      • Awareness of state and federal regulations for the prescription of controlled substances.

  • The NMBON requires all APRNs to comply with the CE requirement on re-licensure, but does not ask for CE verification unless they audit the APRN's re-licensure.

What CE Courses Comply With Rule 9?

  • As noted above, NMNPC recorded a 5 hour track on NCPM at our 2017 annual conference that included content on all the topic areas required in the NMBON CE rule. Those recordings are available for purchase as an online independent learning CE program in our Online Store. Click here to purchase.

  • Other CE courses are available online through various organizations; many would require combining two or more courses to meet all the requirements of Rule 9. We encourage anyone making a decision about a NCPM CE program to compare the content to the list of CE topics listed in Rule 9 to verify that the course includes all the required content. Also keep in mind that many courses will not include the required content on Rule 9 because it is specific to New Mexico.

What About the PMP & NMBOP Rules?

  • All APRNs with DEA and controlled substance licensure must register with the PMP. There is a link on the right of this page to the PMP registration site.
  • There are instructions and a manual for the PMP available that can help APRNs understand how to meet the Rule 9 requirement to become a regular participant in PMP inquiry and reporting. For example, once registered with the PMP, APRNs will have the ability to obtain and review a prescription monitoring report from the PMP prior to prescribing a controlled substance to an individual (one of the requirements included in Rule 9). These reports can provide information on whether the individual is receiving opiates from multiple prescribers, has been getting opiates for more than 12 consecutive weeks, is on more than one controlled substance, or has evidence of early refills, for example.
  • The NMBOP made changes to the PMP and the Controlled Substances rules, published in the New Mexico Register on August 15, 2012. These changes apply to practitioners holding controlled substance registrations with the NMBOP and govern new telephone prescriptions for any schedule III, IV, or V opiate.
  • APRNs already registered with the PMP can renew their controlled substance registrations but the NMBOP will not issue renewals until they verify practitioners' PMP registration. APRNs not yet registered with the PMP should register now to meet the requirement of Rule 9 and to be able to apply for controlled substance renewal.
  • The NMBOP does not require practitioners who issue controlled substance prescriptions to patients or administer controlled substances in the practice setting to report these activities to the PMP.
  • The NMBOP does require reporting to the PMP under certain circumstances for practitioners who dispense controlled substances directly to their patients.

What's the Bottom Line?

In the interests of patient safety and appropriate practice, all APRNs who prescribe controlled substances should understand the requirements of the amended Pain Relief Act and comply with those requirements. To assist in understanding and meeting the requirements:

  • Read the amendment to the Pain Relief Act (it's short).
  • Become familiar with the requirements in nursing Rule 9 and monitor changes in the rule as they occur.
  • Obtain the required pain management CE before applying for license renewal. (You may purchase access to an online independent learning CE program covering the 5 hours of required content from our Online Store.)
  • Be sure your PMP registration is active before applying for renewal of a controlled substance license.
  • Learn how to participate in PMP inquiry and reporting by reviewing the instructions and manual.
  • Become familiar with the NMBOP rules on prescribing controlled substances.

 For further details and information, use the links on the right of this page to access relevant documents, websites, and courses.

DISCLAIMER: After careful study of the relevant documents and communication with the New Mexico Board of Nursing, the information on this page is accurate to the best of our knowledge. However, please note that all authority for determining how the New Mexico Board of Nursing interprets and implements Rule 9 rests with that Board and we urge APRNs with further questions or concerns to contact the Board directly.

Documents

Websites

Related Information

Pain Management CE Course

  • 2017 all-new NCPM independent learning activity from NMNPC  is now available for purchase. Click here to purchase this CE from our Online Store.
  • This CE program includes all required content for 5 hours of NCPM CE.

Advisory Council Reports

Calendar


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