As both a practicing emergency medicine physician, and Chief Medical Officer at AffirmHealth, a local company dedicated to combatting opioid abuse, I spend a significant amount of time thinking about the right approach to fighting opioid misuse in Tennessee, my home state. David Plazas’s editorial on April 2nd, 2017 rightly draws attention to the opioid epidemic which he characterizes as “Tennessee’s No.1 public health crisis” and his point about the medical vs. criminal management of addiction is a good one. There’s no question that addiction is a multifactorial disease process and our worsening crisis is unlikely to be solved through a law and order approach alone. It’s going to require individualized solutions that tailor therapy based on each addict’s needs.
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