HHS Interagency Task Force on Pain Management Attracts Some ControversyFeb 12, 2019 3:00:00 PM by Mario Ramirez, MD posted in Pain Management, regulations
Task Force Releases Draft Report
The Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act of 2016 established a Pain Management Best Practices Inter-Agency Task Force, chaired by Dr. Vanila Singh, under the oversight of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.Read More
We've launched Shield on the athenahealth MarketplaceJan 31, 2019 8:33:00 AM by Mitch Evans
The Shield platform now integrates with athenaClinicals to help medical group leaders proactively manage and measure opioid prescribing, so they can have the assurance of responsible prescribing across the organization.Read More
New York's Drug Take Back ActJan 23, 2019 3:19:42 PM by Jody Lutz
A report released in November of 2018, from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, show that drug overdoses killed a record number of more than 70,000 Americans in 2017. To put this phenomenon into perspective, drug overdose deaths are higher than deaths from H.I.V., car crashes, or gun violence at their peaks.
We at AffirmHealth report often about the nationwide epidemic, but today we take a closer look at the state of New York. In 2015, New York prescribers wrote 10.2 million opioid prescriptions or 51.3 prescriptions per 100 patients–a 7.8 percent decline since 2013. This is also less than the national rate of 71 prescriptions per 100 patients (IMS Health).Read More
Talking to Your Patients About Opioid Abuse: A Clinician’s GuideJan 16, 2019 9:08:02 AM by Mario Ramirez, MD
At AffirmHealth, our work focuses around working with clinicians to ensure that they are prescribing opioids in a reliable and compliant manner that gives administrators insight into what is happening across their organizations. From the clinician’s viewpoint, my job is to help ensure that the clinical information and the decision support we implement works in a way that actually improves care delivery to the patient—after all, if our work isn’t actually making care better, then we’re doing a disservice to the patient. While our blog has covered a wide range of critical issues around these topics, one thing we’ve never actually discussed is how clinicians should approach the topic of opioid abuse with their patients, strategies for successful risk screening, and what to do if one of your patients develops an opioid use disorder.Read More
2018 DEA Drug Threat Assessment: Key FindingsJan 9, 2019 9:04:33 AM by John Cole
In November of 2018, the DEA released the results of the 2018 National Drug Threat Assessment. The 164 page report highlighted the threats posed to the United States by domestic and international drug trafficking and the abuse of illicit drugs. The DEA’s acting administrator, Uttam Dhillon, said the assessment “underscores the magnitude of the nation’s opioid crisis and highlights the necessity of using all the tools at our disposal to fight this epidemic.”1Read More
Opioids: A Global perspective. Treating Pain and Battling Addiction.Jan 2, 2019 2:34:09 PM by Jody Lutz
The Opioid Epidemic in America is a topic covered extensively, each and every day in the news. AffirmHealth covers this topically frequently as well, most recently in our, "Where are We Now?" article.Read More
Teens and Opioid AbuseDec 18, 2018 3:34:22 PM by Jody Lutz
Historically, research has shown that nearly 1 in 4 high school seniors in the United States have been exposed to prescription opioids through either medical or non-medical use. On November 12, 2018 a JAMA abstract reported: Between 1997 and 2012, the rate of hospitalization due to opioid poisonings nearly doubled in US children and adolescents. Opioid use early in life is associated with a higher likelihood of opioid misuse in the future. Read More
The Opioid Epidemic at the End of 2018: Are We Making Progress?Dec 11, 2018 9:31:00 AM by Mario Ramirez, MD
For those of us involved in the opioid epidemic as caregivers, patient advocates, and researchers, there was an interesting moment earlier this year when a series of news stories noted some optimism in the fight against overdose deaths.
In mid-October, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar commented on preliminary data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that suggested “that the U.S. may be ‘beginning to turn the tide’ on the opioid crisis.” “The seemingly relentless trend of rising overdose deaths seems to be finally bending in the right direction…We are so far from the end of the epidemic, but we are perhaps at the end of the beginning.”Read More
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