MEDICATION-ASSISTED TREATMENT & OPIOID ABUSE/ADDICTION
- Maine AG Joins Calls for Allowing Methadone Dispensing Data
- Some Opioid Users On Methadone Have High Risk of Relapse
- Four Takeaways from the National Rx Drug Abuse and Heroin Summit
- Legal Action Center’s Report Shares Effective Strategies for Use of Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) in Drug Courts
- For Inmates on Methadone, Forced Detox Can Be a Dangerous Cycle
- Legal Action Center Comments on Proposed Rule to Modernize 42 CFR Part 2
- Significant Decline in U.S. Opioid Prescribing
- News From Maine: Advocates Push to Let Patients Use Marijuana to Treat Opiate Addiction
- U.S. Surgeon General: Stop Judging Addicts
LINKS TO ADDITIONAL NATIONAL NEWS OF INTEREST
- Painkiller critics take aim at hospital surveys, procedures – 4/13/16
- Why not Vivitrol? Promising opioid high blocker gets little attention, use – 4/12/16
- Dozens of Medical Schools Join Fight Against Opioid Addiction – 4/9/16
- The stunning spread of the opioid painkiller and heroin epidemic, in one map – 4/9/16
- Blog From the Huffington Post: Should We Stop Using the Word ‘Addict’? – 4/5/16
- What it Will Take to Defeat the Opioid Addiction Epidemic – 4/4/16
Categories: 2016-04-21, News Updates, TOC
“Maine Attorney General Janet Mills and more than two dozen of her counterparts in other states are asking the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to close a loophole that keeps methadone clinics from reporting their dispensing data to state Prescription Drug Monitoring Programs.
Mills says methadone has traditionally been excluded because of privacy concerns around drug treatment. In a letter to U.S. DHHS Secretary Sylvia Burwell, Mills and her colleagues say the time has come to change the rules.
In their letter, Mills and the other attorneys general point out that buprenorphine, another drug used to treat patients with opioid use disorder, is included on Prescription Drug Monitoring Programs. They say it’s illogical to include one drug and not the other and that it creates “an arbitrary and dangerous distinction” between the two.”
Source: MPB News – April 12, 2016
Categories: 2016-04-21, Buprenorphine, Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT), Methadone, News Updates, Opioid Abuse/Addiction, Opioid Treatment Programs (OTPs), Prescription Drugs
Tags: Buprenorphine, Methadone Treatment, Opioid Treatment Programs, Prescription Drug Monitoring Programs
“New research suggests that certain patients with opioid use disorder being treated with methadone are at a high risk of relapse.
Published in Substance Abuse Research and Treatment, a new study revealed that people who become addicted to painkillers later in life; use injections for their drugs; and ingest benzodiazepines illicitly are more likely to relapse from methadone maintenance treatment (MMT).”
Source: Forbes.com – April 14, 2016
Categories: 2016-04-21, Addiction, Heroin, Methadone, News Updates, Opioid Abuse/Addiction, Opioid Treatment Programs (OTPs), Opioids, Prescription Drugs
Tags: Benzodiazepines, Heroin, Prescription Opioids, Relapse
“At the end of March, over 1,900 people convened in Atlanta, Georgia, at the National Prescription Drug Abuse and Heroin Summit, with attendees including advocates, clinicians, treatment providers, law enforcement officers and government officials. The summit, now in its fifth year, reported record attendance and stated this was the first time heroin was included in the conversation. With the increasing rates of opioid use and deaths, there was a new sense of urgency this year.
Opioids have killed over 500,000 people since 1999, which is more than World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War combined.”
Of the many discussions held at the summit, the primary takeaways in continuing the fight against opioid addiction include:
- Reduce Demand
- Clinician Education
- Holistic Approach
See related press release: National Leaders Outline Strategies to Combat Drug Abuse Through Enforcement, Research, Prevention at National Rx Abuse & Heroin Summit available at:
Source: Forbes.com – April 12, 2016
Categories: 2016-04-21, Heroin, News Updates, Opioid Abuse/Addiction, Prescription Drugs
Tags: Heroin, Prescription Opioids, Substance abuse treatment
Legal Action Center’s Report Shares Effective Strategies for Use of Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) in Drug Courts
“The Legal Action Center has released a report, Medication-Assisted Treatment in Drug Courts: Recommended Strategies. Produced with the Center for Court Innovation and New York State Unified Court System, the report features three in-depth profiles of drug courts with effective MAT programs. Sections such as “Nine Components of Successful MAT Programs” and “Specific Issues for Rural Courts” reflect lessons from 10 courts in urban, rural, and suburban areas.
The report shares insights from prosecutors, judges, and other treatment team members to help courts across the country successfully incorporate evidence-based treatment for opioid addiction. The authors provide nuts-and-bolts strategies for addressing common concerns, such as: “How does the court monitor compliance and illicit use of MAT medication?” “How long do participants stay on MAT?” “Who decides?” The report also provides the evidence behind MAT, including its effectiveness in reducing illicit opioid use and criminal behavior.”
The section on Nine Components of Effective MAT Programs is a must-read for courts planning and developing MAT programs:
- Counseling and other services – plus medication – are essential.
- Courts are selective about treatment programs and private prescribing physicians.
- Courts develop strong relationships with treatment programs and require regular communication regarding participant progress.
- Screening and assessment must consider all clinically appropriate forms of treatment.
- Judges rely heavily on the clinical judgment of treatment providers as well as the court’s own clinical staff.
- Endorsement of medication-assisted treatment by all members of the drug court team is the goal, but not a prerequisite.
- Monitoring for illicit use of medication-assisted treatment medication is a key component of the program and can be accomplished in different ways.
- Medications for medication-assisted treatment are covered through government and/or private insurance programs.
- Medication-assisted treatment operates very similarly to other kinds of treatment.
The report can be accessed from: http://lac.org/lacs-groundbreaking-report-shares-effective-strategies-for-use-of-medication-assisted-treatment-in-drug-courts/
Source: Legal Action Center – April 2016
Categories: 2016-04-21, Addiction, Drug Courts & Criminal Justice, Heroin, Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT), News Updates, Opioid Abuse/Addiction, Opioids, Prescription Drugs
Tags: Buprenorphine, Heroin, Methadone Treatment, Prescription Opioids, Substance abuse treatment
“Burghardt is 32. He’s been working on staying sober for a decade with the help of methadone, a slow-acting opiate doctors use to help people steer clear of heroin. Still, he’s been in and out of jail 11 times in the last 12 years: arguments where the police are called; drug possession; driving without a license.
And every time Burghardt lands in Valley Street Jail, he has to go off methadone, cold turkey.
If Burghardt lived in at least 33 other countries — from Canada to Iran to Kyrgyzstan — he could continue his methadone treatment behind bars. But very few jails and prisons in the United States allow the drug, even though the World Health Organization calls it an “essential medicine” and recommends that it be available to inmates.”
Source: New Hampshire Public Radio – April 12, 2016
Categories: 2016-04-21, Drug Courts & Criminal Justice, Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT), News Updates, Opioid Abuse/Addiction
Tags: Methadone Treatment, Substance abuse treatment
“The Legal Action Center (LAC) recently submitted comments on to the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) in response to its Proposed Rule to amend regulations governing the confidentiality of substance use disorder patient records (42 C.F.R. Part 2). SAMHSA is seeking to modernize the regulations while also maintaining critical patient privacy protections. LAC believes SAMHSA struck an appropriate balance between facilitating the sharing health information and protecting patients.
LAC’s comments included both recommendations and requests for clarification on topics including: revised and new definitions; notice to patients about their confidentiality rights; consent requirements; the prohibition on re-disclosure; medical emergency and research exceptions to the consent requirements; reporting of suspected abuse and neglect; and the need for increased education about and enforcement of the law.”
Source: Legal Action Center – April 12, 2016
Categories: 2016-04-21, Addiction, News Updates
Tags: Government, Legislation, Substance abuse treatment
“Nearly 17 million fewer prescriptions were filled for opioid pain medications in the U.S. in 2015, driven largely by a significant decline in prescriptions for hydrocodone, according to a new report by IMS Health.
The report adds further evidence that the so-called “epidemic” of opioid abuse and addiction is increasingly being fueled by illegal opioids such as heroin and illicit fentanyl, not by prescription pain medication intended for patients.
Hydrocodone was reclassified by the Drug Enforcement Administration as a Schedule II controlled substance in October, 2014 – making 2015 the first full year that more restrictive prescribing rules for the pain medication were in effect. But hydrocodone prescriptions were falling even before the rescheduling. They peaked in 2011 at 137 million and fell to 97 million in 2015, a 30% decline.”
Source: PainNewsNetwork.org – April 15, 2016
Categories: 2016-04-21, News Updates, Opioid Abuse/Addiction, Prescription Drugs
Tags: Addiction, Pain, Prescription Opioids
“Medical marijuana caregivers and patients will ask state regulators Tuesday to consider adding opiate addiction as a qualifying condition for medical marijuana.
Maine will be the first state to formally consider allowing medical marijuana to be used as treatment for addiction to opiates and other drugs derived from chemical synthesis, said Dawson Julia, a caregiver from Unity who submitted a petition to the Maine Department of Health and Human Services to request the public hearing.
But the idea of treating opiate addiction with marijuana, which the federal government still classifies as an illicit drug, is likely to meet opposition from the LePage administration, as well as from substance abuse providers and the medical community, because of scant evidence that the treatment would be effective.”
Source: PressHerald.com – April 18, 2016
Categories: 2016-04-21, News Updates, Opioid Abuse/Addiction
Tags: Addiction, Heroin, medical marijuana, Prescription Opioids, Substance abuse treatment
“U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Vivek H. Murthy said today he will shine a spotlight on the nation’s growing prescription painkiller and heroin epidemic the same way his predecessors focused on earlier national health crises like smoking and HIV.
Murthy, speaking at a conference of the Association of Health Care Journalists, said he will release this year the first surgeon general’s report on substance abuse disorders and addiction.
Murthy said he hopes the report helps the nation “… move the needle on addressing addiction, something we have needed to do for decades.”
The report will highlight the best scientific evidence on treatment and recovery, and seek to erase the stigma surrounding addiction, he said.”
Source: Syracuse.com – April 9, 2016
Categories: 2016-04-21, Addiction, Heroin, News Updates, Prescription Drugs
Tags: Addiction, Government, Heroin, Prescription Opioids
Categories: 2016-04-21, Heroin, News Updates, Opioid Abuse/Addiction, Prescription Drugs
Tags: Heroin, Prescription Opioids