Opioid crisis

Opioids are substances that act on opioid receptors to produce morphine-like effects. Medically they are primarily used for pain relief, including anesthesia. Other medical uses include suppression of diarrhea, replacement therapy for opioid use disorder, reversing opioid overdose, suppressing cough, suppressing opioid induced constipation, as well as for executions in the United States. Extremely potent opioids such as carfentanil are only approved for veterinary use.
Latest news and discussion about the opioid epidemic in the U.S.
  • State seeking proposals for opioid response grant
    Baltimore Sun

    State seeking proposals for opioid response grant

    The Maryland Department of Health, Behavioral Health Administration received a two-year State Opioid Response grant from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration to support the ongoing statewide efforts to combat the opioid epidemic — and the BHA is now seeking proposals for recovery housing from Local Behavioral Health Authorities and Local Addiction Authorities. “The SOR grant is designed to address Maryland's opioid crisis by increasing access to evidence-based treatment, reducing unmet treatment needs, and reducing opioid related deaths through the provision of prevention, treatment, and recovery support services,” states a Jan. 16 media release. A total of $298,395 in

  • HepVu Releases State-Level Maps Showing Impact of Hepatitis C Epidemic Across the U.S.
    PR Newswire

    HepVu Releases State-Level Maps Showing Impact of Hepatitis C Epidemic Across the U.S.

    ATLANTA, Jan. 16, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, HepVu launched new interactive maps visualizing state-level estimates of people living with Hepatitis C across the United States that highlight a concentration of infections in some states most impacted by the opioid epidemic. Published in JAMA Network Open, the data reveal an estimated 2.3 million people living with Hepatitis C infection in the U.S. between 2013 and 2016, with a high burden in the West and in some Appalachian states. "We still have more than 2 million people living with Hepatitis C at a time when ending this epidemic is possible," said Patrick Sullivan, Ph.D., DVM, Professor of Epidemiology at Emory University's Rollins School of Public Health and Principal Scientist for AIDSVu.

  • medicalxpress.com

    CHOP surgeons find opioids often overprescribed for elbow fractures in children

    Opioid drugs prescribed to children for pain relief after a typical pediatric orthopaedic procedure may be significantly overprescribed, according to a new study by researchers at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP). The patients used less than 25 percent of the drugs, suggesting a potential risk of opioid diversion. The findings were published on Jan. 16, 2019 in the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery. Opioid diversion and non-medical use of opioids are tremendous challenges as the medical community strives to achieve improved opioid stewardship. This is especially true in orthopaedics. Across the country, more than half of all opioid prescriptions were given to patients discharged by

  • Meth's resurgence spotlights lack of meds to combat the addiction
    Orlando Sentinel

    Meth's resurgence spotlights lack of meds to combat the addiction

    In 2016, news reports warned the public of an opioid epidemic gripping the nation. But Madeline Vaughn, then a lead clinical intake coordinator at the Houston-based addiction treatment organization Council on Recovery, sensed something different was going on with the patients she checked in from the street. Their behavior, marked by twitchy suspicion, a poor memory and the feeling that someone was following them, signaled that the people coming through the center's doors were increasingly hooked on a different drug: methamphetamine. "When you're in the boots on the ground," Vaughn said, "what you see may surprise you, because it's not in the headlines." In the time since, it's become increasingly

  • Doctor Says Shutdown May Force Him To Turn Away Patients Addicted To Opioids
    kuow.org

    Doctor Says Shutdown May Force Him To Turn Away Patients Addicted To Opioids

    Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) warned over the weekend that the shutdown could soon impact the treatment of patients addicted to opioids. Doctors treating those patients have to get approval from the now-shuttered Drug Enforcement Administration if they want to prescribe Suboxone, a drug used in conjunction with other therapies to manage opioid addiction. Doctors who want to prescribe the medication to more patients also have to get approval from the federal government. Dr. Anthony Martinez, with the Erie County Medical Center in Buffalo, New York, tells Here & Now's Robin Young he is about to reach his limit of how many patients he can subscribe Suboxone. In that case, he would

  • PR Newswire

    Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island partners with Rhode Island PBS on education efforts to prevent opioid misuse

    PROVIDENCE, R.I., Jan. 15, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island (BCBSRI) and Rhode Island PBS Education Services are extending their opioid use prevention partnership into Rhode Island middle and high schools. With the expertise of Rhode Island Student Assistance Services (RISAS), the partnership is introducing age-appropriate media-based curriculum resources. "Rhode Islanders statewide deeply feel the effects of the opioid epidemic.

  • Blue Cross Blue Shield Of Massachusetts Provides $1M In Grants To Fund Recovery Coaches
    PR Newswire

    Blue Cross Blue Shield Of Massachusetts Provides $1M In Grants To Fund Recovery Coaches

    BOSTON, Jan. 15, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- As part of its ongoing commitment to addressing the opioid epidemic, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts ("Blue Cross") is launching a new initiative to aid in the growth and standardization of recovery coaches. Recovery coaches are trained professionals, typically with lived experience, who provide peer support to those in treatment and recovery for substance use disorder (SUD). "There is promising evidence that suggests recovery coaches can improve outcomes for those with SUD," said Andrew Dreyfus, president & CEO of Blue Cross.

  • Court filing alleges Purdue Pharma family pushed aggressive, misleading marketing of OxyContin
    The Week

    Court filing alleges Purdue Pharma family pushed aggressive, misleading marketing of OxyContin

    In a court filing released Tuesday, Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey asserts that the former president of Purdue Pharma, Richard Sackler, knew in the early 2000s that his company's powerful opioid painkiller, OxyContin, was being abused, but still pushed it on doctors and tried to blame users for becoming addicted. "We have to hammer on abusers in every way possible," Sackler, whose family owns Purdue Pharma, wrote in a 2001 email. "They are the culprits and the problem. They are reckless criminals." This was one of several internal documents cited in the court filing, The New York Times reports, which also alleges that Sackler told sales representatives they needed to urge doctors

  • ‘Hightown’: Riley Voelkel To Co-Star In Starz’s Opioid Epidemic Drama Series
    Deadline

    ‘Hightown’: Riley Voelkel To Co-Star In Starz’s Opioid Epidemic Drama Series

    The Originals alumna Riley Voelkel has been cast as a series regular opposite James Badge Dale and Monica Raymund in Hightown, Starz's drama series from Rebecca Cutter, Gary Lennon and Jerry Bruckheimer TV. Written and executive produced by Cutter, Hightown is a crime drama set amid the drug trade on Cape Cod, touched off when a body washes ashore and discovered by an irreverent National Marine Fisheries Service officer, Jackie Quinones (Raymund), who is determined to…

  • Wisdom teeth removal puts some young people at risk of opioid addiction, study says
    New Orleans Times-Picayune

    Wisdom teeth removal puts some young people at risk of opioid addiction, study says

    Wisdom teeth removal surgery, a fairly common and painful procedure, is also one of the first points of access to prescription opioid medication among adolescents and young adults resulting in a higher risk of opioid addiction in this age group, a new study found. About 31 percent of patients ages 16 to 25 years old were prescribed opioids by their dentists after having their wisdom teeth removed, according to the study which was published in JAMA Internal Medicine in December. For the study researchers looked at the link between the number of opioid prescriptions given to patients ages 16 to 25 years old after getting their wisdom teeth pulled out in 2015 and the rate of opioid abuse and dependence among this patient group a year after their surgery.

  • Alleged ringleader in opioid scheme wins bond decision
    WLNS Lansing

    Alleged ringleader in opioid scheme wins bond decision

    DETROIT (AP) - A judge has agreed to release a 77-year-old Detroit-area doctor who is charged with a multimillion-dollar scheme to distribute opioids and bill insurance providers for unnecessary treatments. The Detroit News reports that Dr. Rajendra Bothra must liquidate a retirement account to cover the $7 million bond. Prosecutors argued Tuesday that the native of India might flee the country if released. Bothra will be confined to his home with an electronic tether. He and five other doctors are accused of prescribing opioids to induce people to visit their office. The indictment says patients were forced to undergo other treatments. Nearly $500 million was billed to insurers, mostly Medicare

  • Democrat doesn't think wall will stop drugs
    @politifact

    Democrat doesn't think wall will stop drugs

    The federal government's partial shutdown has amplified disagreements over how best to secure the southern border. U.S. Rep. Nita Lowey, whose 17th Congressional District includes Rockland County and part of Westchester County, contends building a wall would not prevent the influx of opioids to the United States. "I think there are serious differences about what we should be doing for border security," Lowey, a Democrat, told WNYC radio host Brian Lehrer. Lowey, who chairs the House Appropriations Committee, called the amount of opioids coming through ports of entry a "real threat." She said people should know that opioids arrive in the United States through smugglers approaching legal points of entry.

  • Doctor Says Shutdown May Force Him To Turn Away Patients Addicted To Opioids
    www.wbaa.org

    Doctor Says Shutdown May Force Him To Turn Away Patients Addicted To Opioids

    Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) warned over the weekend that the shutdown could soon impact the treatment of patients addicted to opioids. Doctors treating those patients have to get approval from the now-shuttered Drug Enforcement Administration if they want to prescribe Suboxone, a drug used in conjunction with other therapies to manage opioid addiction. Doctors who want to prescribe the medication to more patients also have to get approval from the federal government. Dr. Anthony Martinez, with the Erie County Medical Center in Buffalo, New York, tells Here & Now's Robin Young he is about to reach his limit of how many patients he can subscribe Suboxone. In that case, he would

  • MedicineNet.com

    Opioids Now More Deadly for Americans Than Traffic Accidents

    MONDAY, Jan. 14, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- For the first time in history, Americans' risk of dying from an opioid overdose is higher than their risk of dying in a car accident, the National Safety Council reported Monday. The chances of dying from an accidental opioid overdose in the United States are now 1 in 96, compared to a 1 in 103 risk of dying in a traffic crash, according to the new analysis of preventable deaths in the council's Injury Facts publication. The opioid crisis is the reason why opioid overdoses are now at the top of the list, and that crisis is worsening with an influx of illicit fentanyl, according to the council. The analysis of U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

  • Opioid ODs Top Car Crashes As Cause Of Death In U.S.: Report
    East Hampton, NY Patch

    Opioid ODs Top Car Crashes As Cause Of Death In U.S.: Report

    Americans are now more likely to die of an accidental opioid overdose than in a car crash on the road — for the first time in the nation's history, according to a new report. A new report from the National Safety Council states that the odds of dying accidentally from an opioid overdose have risen to 1 in 96, higher than the odds of dying in a motor vehicle crash, with those odds at 1 in 103. In comparison, according to the National Safety Council report, the odds of dying from suicide were 1 in 88, dying in falls, 1 in 114, gun assault, 1 in 285, and drowning, 1 in 1,117. "The nation's opioid crisis is fueling the Council's grim probabilities, and that crisis is worsening with an influx of illicit fentanyl,"the NCS said in a release.