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STRATEGY 5 – Change Consequences (Incentives/Disincentives)

Increase or decrease the probability and risk of Rx abuse and addiction and/or applaud the efforts of those actively engaged in Rx abuse prevention and intervention, recognizing that the power of positive influence is contagious. This strategy involves changing behaviors through supporting the use of 

  • Incentives and positive consequences such as recognition, discounts, coupons, rewards that encourage people to engage in specific positive behaviors and strategies.
  • Disincentives and negative consequences such as fines, citations, loss of privileges and revocations.

Target hospitals, pharmacists, doctors, law enforcement officials, politicians, educators and businesses.

Print out this document and check off the strategies that are most relevant to your community.

  • Recognize your partners for being active players in preventing Rx abuse through special breakfasts, lunches or press conferences
    • Distribute commemorative plaques, ribbons, certificates, slides and other items.
    • Promote their accomplishments through local newspapers, television and radio stations and social media channels.
    •  Coordinate these activities in conjunction with National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month, National Recovery Month and National Drug Take-Back Initiative.
  • Survey your current business partners to verify the presence of information on medicine safe use within their drug-free workplace programs. Create and distribute signage that identifies employers, pharmacies, hospitals and other venues as Rx Abuse Prevention Partners. Recognize new businesses that adopt targeted policies.
  • Negotiate with pharmaceutical companies, the press and government agencies to provide incentives to pharmacies, medical practices, law enforcement agencies, hospitals, and clinics for participation in Rx abuse prevention and intervention activities. Incentives include cash awards, free advertising and promotion, event sponsorship and in-kind services.
  • If drug monitoring legislation has passed in your state, recognize pharmacies that actively participate in the program.
  • Collaborate with health care professional associations on recognizing members who
    • Follow appropriate prescribing practices.
    • Regularly discuss prescription drug abuse prevention and intervention strategies with their patients.
  • Collaborate with insurance providers to decrease insurance premiums and workers compensation expenses for business that promote a drug-free workplace programs.
  • Provide incentives for youth, coaches, teachers, etc. who sign a drug-free lifestyle pledge.  Incentives can include drug-free items (mugs, t-shirts, etc.), coupons from local businesses, entry into a raffle for prizes, extra credit for students.
  • Promote the use of disincentives (such as a prescriber losing his/her license) for doctors and other health care practitioners who carry out improper prescribing practices.
  • Require mandatory parent training of youth who are in treatment for prescription drug addiction.