Weekend Round Up

White House Opioid Abuse Ad Campaign, Healthcare Finance, and State Policy News for: Indiana, New Hampshire and West Virginia 

With opioid prescribing regulations being updated, national policy announcements, state guidelines as well as daily commentary regarding the opioid epidemic flooding news outlets, the AffirmHealth Weekend Round Up looks at the top headlines that caught our team’s eye. From controlled substance protocols to research focusing on pain management, addiction medicine, the ER and more provided to you in an easy to access summary. News you can use. Welcome to the Weekend Round Up.



June 5, 2018

In Opioid Crisis, Doctors Struggling to Balance Addiction Concerns & Pain Management 

Source: The Exchange

Source: New Hampshire Public Radio

AffirmHealth Key Take Away:

The opioid crisis has forced physicians to rethink their prescribing practices, and many are providing fewer opioid prescriptions, potentially leaving some patients without proper pain management.

Tighter regulations and insurance requirements have reduced overprescribing, but many say this makes it difficult for patients with both acute and chronic pain to find the help they need.

The Exchange looked at how physicians balance prescribing opioids safely and responsibly with increased pressure to reduce opioid abuse.   

Find the Full Article Here: Struggling to Find Balance



June 7, 2018

With Real-Life Stories, White House Ad Campaign Aims to Prevent Youth Opioid Abuse

Source: National Public Radio

AffirmHealth Key Take Away:

The ad campaign, formally called "The Truth About Opioids," was announced by the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) and targets teenagers and young adults. The White House is partnering with the Ad Council and other groups to broadcast the ads online and on television.

The images are graphic and, White House officials say, based on true stories that highlight how easily people can become addicted.

Find the Full Article Here: New White House Ad Campaign Aims to Prevent Opioid Abuse



June 8, 2018

New Law Aims to Fight the Opioid Epidemic

Source: wowktv.com

AffirmHealth Key Take Away:

A new law in West Virginia limits opioid prescriptions and allows patients to opt out of being prescribed opioids altogether. 

The Opioid Reduction Act, or Senate Bill 273, was requested by Governor Jim Justice as a way of easing the burden for healthcare providers. 

Under the new law, healthcare providers must now prescribe non-opioid treatments before suggesting prescription pain medicine. 

Find the full article here: New Law Aims to Fight the Opioid Epidemic



June 8, 2018

Opioid Epidemic: Turns Out Patients Are Happier When Doctors Lower Their Dose  

Source: Healthcare Finance News

AffirmHealth Key Take Away:  

A Kaiser Permanente study of nearly 2,500 patients who used high doses of opioids for at least six months showed that reducing their opioid use did not lower their satisfaction with care -- which could have positive reimbursement implications for hospitals.

Patient satisfaction is one of the criteria the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services looks at to determine reimbursement -- the more patients report being happy, the more money hospitals receive -- and this reflects a broader wave of consumerism. With the advent of online ratings sites and social media, patients wield considerable power, and increasingly are voting for their preferred providers with their wallets.

Find the Full Article Here Turns Out Patients Are Happier When Doctors Lower Their Dose



On Opioids, We Found a Consensus Among Hoosier Experts: It’s Time to Act

June 8, 2018

Source: Inside Indiana Business

AffirmHealth Key Take Aways: Through our research funded under the Indiana University Responding to the Addictions Crisis Grand Challenge initiative, we have identified specific steps we can take toward a healthier, more resilient future. Following conversations with public health officials, researchers, criminal justice professionals, healthcare providers, and policymakers who deal with the crisis on a practical, day-to-day basis, we learned more about the crisis than even the most dramatic news stories could communicate. This crisis stresses our institutions to an unparalleled extent; hardworking public health departments, emergency rooms, treatment facilities, child services, community agencies, law enforcement, jails, and prisons frequently are overwhelmed.

An effective response will require evidence-based and -informed solutions, along with unprecedented collaborations at the local, state, and national level, but it can be done, and there are things we can do – starting now – to help.


Find the full article here: On Opioids, We Found a Consensus Among Hoosier Experts: It's Time to Act


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