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Nov 2017

Opioid Manager


In Ontario alone, one in eight people received an opioid for chronic non-cancer pain in 2016. The Opioid Manager is a clinical tool designed to support primary care providers manage opioid prescriptions for patients across Canada who experience chronic non-cancer pain.

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About the tool

Opioids can be an effective way to treat pain but it is important for providers to know how to balance the risks and side effects of opioid therapy with the desired benefits. The Opioid Manager is designed to support healthcare providers prescribe and manage opioids for patients with chronic non-cancer pain.

The Centre for Effective Practice, in conjunction with the University Health Network, have updated the Opioid Manager tool based on feedback from health care providers and the recommendations from the 2017 Canadian Guideline for Opioids for Chronic Non-Cancer Pain.

What’s new with the Opioid Manager 2017?

The new Opioid Manager:

  • Emphasizes the importance of optimizing non-pharmacological and non-opioid pharmacotherapy interventions.
  • Contains initial dosing, titration and morphine equivalency information for all recommended opioids.
  • Contains succinct information and examples on how to appropriately monitor, taper and switch opioid prescriptions.
  • Includes accompanying fillable appendices that can inserted into the patient medical chart.

Clinical lead

  • Arun Radhakrishnan


    Dr. Arun Radhakrishnan is a family physician with a focused practice in chronic pain and is the current co-chair of the Collaborative Mental Health Network and the Medical Mentoring for Addictions and Pain Network at the Ontario College of Family Physicians. He is also an adjunct assistant professor with the Department of Family and Community Medicine at the University of Toronto. 

    In 2013, Arun completed a Master’s degree at the University of Toronto in Health Services Research focusing on the value of information and communication technologies to enable knowledge translation activities in the areas of pain, mental health and addictions to support community physicians. His interests also include teaching and curriculum development around the integration of technology into the clinical encounter.

    Dr. Radhakrishnan provided clinical leadership for the opioid therapy for chronic non-cancer pain, non-pharmacological and non-opioid options for chronic non-cancer pain and opioid use disorder topics.

  • Jose Silveira


    Dr. Jose Silveira is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine at the University of Toronto. Since 2001, Dr. Silveira has worked closely with the Ontario College of Family Physician’s Collaborative Mentoring Networks on the steering committee, as co-chair and as mentor. The networks support primary care providers in managing mental disorders, addictions and chronic pain. Dr. Silveira’s professional focus is to support the delivery of mental health and addiction care through primary care and community networks.

  • Andrea Furlan

    MD, PhD

    Dr. Andrea Furlan is an Associate Professor in the Department of Medicine at the University of Toronto and a Staff Physician and Senior Scientist at the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute. She is also a Scientist at the Institute for Work & Health in Toronto. She obtained her PhD in Clinical Epidemiology from the Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation at the University of Toronto. Dr. Furlan has extensive experience in reviewing the scientific literature for the Cochrane Collaboration and for clinical practice guidelines. She received a CIHR New Investigator Award, and her research focus is on treatments of chronic pain including medications, complementary and alternative therapies, and rehabilitation. She was the team leader for the development of the Canadian Opioid Guideline, and is now involved with Guideline’s National Faculty in the dissemination and implementation of the guideline across Canada. She provided clinical leadership for the original and updated Opioid Manager. She is the author of the My Opioid Manager, a book and App for patients using opioids for chronic pain. Dr. Furlan is a co-Chair of Echo Ontario (link is external) for Pain and Opioid Stewardship.

Thank you

Thank you to everyone who supported the development of these tools and resources!

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