Weekend Round Up: Pennsylvania and Tennessee State News, Insurance Coverage and Marijuana Training Scrapped

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.


STATE NEWS: Tennessee

June 29, 2018

Here’s What New Tennessee Opioid Restrictions Mean at your Doctor’s Office and Pharmacy

Source: knownews.com

AffirmHealth Key Take Away:

As of July 1, if you have a prescription for opioid drugs, you’ll see some changes when you go to the pharmacy. That’s the date legislation related to Gov. Bill Haslam’s sweeping TN Together opioid reform takes effect. Haslam budgeted more than $30 million in state and federal funds to attack the opioid epidemic through prevention, treatment and law enforcement.

Find the Full Article Here: TN Together Opioid Reform Summary



June 21, 2018

Pain Medicine Group Cancels Doctor Training About Marijuana

Source: abcnews.com

AffirmHealth Key Take Away:

A national medical group Thursday abruptly canceled its plans to train doctors about marijuana for pain relief after a federal agency pulled its funding.

The episode highlights an ongoing conflict between federal and state laws on marijuana.

The American Academy of Pain Medicine scrubbed its plans for a one-hour online course next month after a request from the U.S. government agency that provided the funding, a spokeswoman for the pain medicine group said. The money came from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, or SAMHSA.

Find the Full Article Here: American Academy of Pain Medicine Cancels Doctor Training on Marijuana


June 28, 2018

Coverage Policies Compared for Back Pain Medications

Source: clinicalpainadvisor.com

AffirmHealth Key Take Away:

There are opportunities for recalibrating the role of opioids in pain care, including expanding access to opioid alternatives through coverage and reimbursement policies, according to a study published online June 22 in JAMA Network Open.

Dora H. Lin, M.H.S., from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore, and colleagues examined medication coverage policies for 30 prescription opioids and 32 non-opioids used to treat low back pain in a study of health plan documents from 15 Medicaid, 15 Medicare Advantage, and 20 commercial health plans.

Find the full article here: Coverage Policies Compared for Back Pain Medications

STATE NEWS: Pennsylvania

July 1, 2018

STATE OF EMERGENCY: Solutions to Pennsylvania’s Opioid Epidemic: A County-By-County Look

Source: The Morning Call

AffirmHealth Key Take Away:

Pennsylvania newsrooms have been documenting the opioid crisis for many years. But now, in a special project, “State of Emergency: Searching for Solutions to Pennsylvania’s Opioids Crisis,” they are marshaling their resources to spotlight county by county what Pennsylvanians are doing to try to reverse the soaring number of overdose deaths.

Journalists have produced text stories, photos, video and audio in more than 50 counties to cast a spotlight on strategies and initiatives that are showing promise. This initiative is a joint effort of the Pennsylvania Associated Press Media Editors, the Pennsylvania Society of News Editors and the Pennsylvania Associated Press.

MAP: Drug-related deaths in Pa. counties »

Find the Full Article Here: STATE OF EMERGENCY: Pennsylvania's Opioid Epidemic: A Couny-By-County Look


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