How do these new opioid guidelines affect you?

June 22, 2016

Important Update: Pain BC has met with the College of Physicians and Surgeons BC (CPSBC) to discuss the impact of the new Standards and Guidelines on people living with pain and their families, as well as the concerns of those physicians who have approached us since the changes on June 1. Our representatives felt that the College was receptive to the concerns raised, and we anticipate that the College will issue a public statement soon to clarify the intention of the Standards and Guidelines and, potentially, to announce some amendments. We will keep the Pain BC community up to date with any news.

If you're living with chronic pain, you may be wondering about these new opioid guidelines and how they impact you.


On June 1, 2016, the College of Physicians and Surgeons of BC (CPSBC) instituted legally binding standards that physicians must follow when prescribing opioids, benzodiazepines and stimulants. A number of pain medications fall under these new standards. You may want to familiarize yourself with these new professional guidelines and standards. The CPSBC has also released a list of questions and answers around the guidelines. 

Pain BC's Response

Are you wondering what Pain BC has to say? While we support the College's efforts to curb the unsafe prescribing of medications, we have several important concerns about the implementation of these standards. Read more.

What Can You Do?

If these new standards have affected your health care or your health, Pain BC and the Pain Medicine Physicians of BC encourage you to share your story. You can file a complaint with the College of Physicians and Surgeons of BC.

File a complaint

  • Please send a copy to the Prescription Review Program ( as they are the authors of the new prescribing policy.
  • Please also send a copy of your complaint to
  • It would be beneficial to copy your MLA as well. You can find contact information for your MLA here.