Once every five years, if you prescribe opioids to a patient during a license period (every two years between renewals), you must complete at least two hours of category 1 credits regarding the United States Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines for prescribing opioids for chronic pain, including recommendations on limitations on dosages and the length of prescriptions, risk factors for abuse, and nonopioid and nonpharmacologic therapy options

If you had a permanent or special license on January 1, 2019, you have until January 1, 2024, to complete the chronic pain management training and shall then complete the training once every five years thereafter.

View or download the sample pain management agreement.

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End-of-Life Care

Physicians with active Iowa medical licenses are required to complete two hours of Category 1 credits for end-of-life care every five years. The training must be related to end-of-life, not palliative care.  These requirements, which became effective August 17, 2011, are for physicians who provide primary care to patients and these specialties: emergency physicians, family physicians, general practice physicians, internists, neurologists, pain medicine specialists, and psychiatrists. 

Physicians who have provided or expect to provide end-of-life care, must complete the training, regardless of specialty designation.  The mandatory training requirements apply to physicians with active medical licenses who report they are retired or are not in clinical practice.  

Physicians are encouraged to check with their medical associations to access applicable Category 1 CMEs for end-of-life care and chronic pain management. Physicians will need to ascertain the accreditation of educational activities and their maximum credit values.

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