Improving primary care opioid prescribing is a public health priority in many western nations. Governments, policymakers and key stakeholders are intervening on multiple levels to address patient, prescriber and systems factors contributing to opioid over-prescription in primary care. Many opioid prescribing interventions specifically target primary care providers (PCPs); however, the overall effectiveness of these interventions is not known. Identifying effective components of PCP-targeted behaviour change interventions may help inform scalability and translation of prescribing interventions across countries and varying primary healthcare settings. The aim of this systematic review is to assess the effectiveness of provider-targeted interventions to improve opioid prescribing in primary care. This protocol reports the methods of the proposed narrative synthesis review that will be guided by the Theoretical Domains Framework (TDF).
The study will follow Cochrane methods for conducting a narrative synthesis. Reporting is compliant with the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-analysis (PRISMA) protocols. The review will conduct searches in PubMed, EMBASE, PsychInfo, CINAHL, and the Cochrane Library databases for studies published in the English language from 2010 onwards. Reference lists of accepted articles will be also screened for additional studies meeting inclusion. Any opioid prescribing behaviour will be measured as an outcome. Intervention components will be mapped to domains of the TDF. No geographic limits will be applied. All stages of screening and data extraction will involve a dual review with gold standard adjudication. The Cochrane Risk of Bias tool will be used to evaluate quality and risk.
This review is being conducted in strict adherence to Cochrane principles. The protocol was submitted for registration to Prospero prior to publication for transparency and to avoid duplication of research. Formal ethics approval is not required for this research. The findings of this review will inform the delivery and implementation of PCP targeted opioid prescribing interventions. Findings will be disseminated to a wide range of stakeholders involved in quality improvement, prescribing interventions, education and training; professional groups, policymakers, researchers and PCPs.
Systematic review registration:
Submitted to Prospero 22 December 2020; pending registration