President Donald Trump’s decision to declare opioid addiction a national emergency could be at least a step toward addressing the complex crisis blamed for claiming more than 33,000 lives in 2015.
The emergency declaration potentially could be used to expedite state responses, dispatch U.S. Public Health Service personnel to hard-hit communities and step up requirements for prescriber education, according to Andrew Kolodny, co-director of opioid policy research at Brandeis University’s Heller School for Social Policy and Management, who was interviewed for a Washington Post story. Continue reading
Photo: Kimberly LeonardHealth journalists learned more about public health issues, including opioid treatment and long-term care, at a D.C. chapter meeting.
A panel of Altarum Institute experts dove into the politics and policy of broad topics in public health, including the untold stories of the opioid crisis, persistent but overlooked concerns over long-term care funding and the importance of access to dental services.
The opioid crisis continues to escalate and, despite widespread coverage of the challenges across the country, there are new and important angles to the story, suggested Tom Coderre, a senior adviser at the D.C.-based research and consulting organization, during a June meeting of the AHCJ’s Washington, D.C., chapter, hosted by the Aspen Institute. Continue reading
Reporting on health and medical topics inevitably involves minefields, especially in topics already rife with stigma, such as mental health. Despite the strides made in the U.S. in destigmatizing mental health issues, subtopics within the field remain frequently misunderstood and unfairly represented — and journalists sometimes inadvertently contribute to that. Continue reading
State-run electronic databases that collect opioid prescription information are being hailed as an effective tool to curb opioid abuse in a new report released last week by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The CDC report got a lot of press, mainly for its primary findings that opioid prescriptions have dropped in recent years but still remained three times higher in 2015 than in 1999. The peak opioid prescribing year was 2010, according to the CDC. Continue reading
As authorities search for ways to curb the nation’s opioid epidemic, an increasing number of localities are turning to a new venue: the courts.
States, counties, cities and even Native American tribes are taking legal aim at companies they see as helping to fuel the drug crisis. In recent months, lawsuits have been filed against drugmakers, pharmacies and drug distributors even as some legal experts have said such challenges could face hurdles. Continue reading