Prevent Opioid Abuse Calls for Action to Accelerate the Positive Downward Trend in Opioid Painkiller Prescriptions

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Rob Horowitz
rhorowitz99@yahoo.com,
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Prevent Opioid Abuse Calls for Action to Accelerate the Positive Downward Trend in Opioid Painkiller Prescriptions

“It is up to Every State in the Nation to Act”

Responding to a recent study showing a 9% nationwide decline in the number of opioid-based pain reliever prescriptions filled by pharmacies last year, Prevent Opioid Abuse, a national organization working to educate patients and parents about the risks of opioid-based painkillers and the available non-opioid alternatives, today called on every state in the nation to arm its’ residents with the real-time information required to dramatically speed up this positive trend. The organization pointed out that even with this welcome decline, about 200 million opioid prescriptions were written last year with millions of people taking these highly addictive medications for the first time.

Prevent Opioid Abuse urged all states to follow the lead of New Jersey, Rhode Island, Nevada and Maryland, and adopt legislation giving patients and parents the information they need to prevent opioid addiction at the time when they most need it – when an opioid painkiller is about to be prescribed.

The legislation requires prescribers to inform all patients, and parents of minors , about the risk of addiction before an opioid is prescribed and when appropriate, discuss the availability of non-opioid alternative pain relief treatments. This common-sense requirement enables patients and parents to recognize signs of addiction and alerts them to less risky alternative methods of pain relief. Maryland became the most recent state to adopt this legislation with Governor Larry Hogan signing it into law on April 24, 2018.

“While it is good to see this positive downward trend, we have a long way to go before we truly accomplish curbing the opioid epidemic,” said Elaine Pozycki, Founder of Prevent Opioid Abuse. “Requiring a conversation between doctors and patients and parents before an opioid is prescribed that includes a discussion of non-opioid pain relief alternatives will speed the decline in the number of opioid prescriptions written.”

Pozycki added, “All patients and parents of patients have the right to know that the medicine they are being prescribed can lead to dependency and addiction. They should also be made aware that there are non-opioid alternatives available that will work for all but the most extreme pain.”

Unfortunately, doctors rarely discuss the addiction potential of opioids before prescribing them,” said Andrew Kolodny, MD, Co-Founder of Physicians for Responsible Prescribing and a Senior Adviser to Prevent Opioid Abuse. “Requiring this conversation will not only result in better- informed parents, patients and prescribers, it will save lives and spare many families from the devastating impact of opioid addiction.”

The over-prescribing of opioid-based pain relievers, such as Oxycodone and Vicodin, is the primary cause of today’s epidemic of opioid addiction, both to opioid-based painkillers and their illegal street cousin, heroin. Two hundred million prescriptions for opioid-based painkillers are written annually in the United States, and Americans take more than 80 percent of the opioid-based painkillers used globally, despite representing just 5 percent of the world’s population.

The results of this overprescribing can be seen in every state of the nation. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Prevention, more than 42,000 people died from overdoses from opioids in the United States in 2016, exceeding the number of people that died from breast cancer

“The National Opioid Commission has made the proposed requirement for a conversation between prescriber and patient before an opioid is prescribed one of its major national recommendations.


Maryland Passes Right to Know law for all patients— becoming 6th state to pass a conversation requirement

Governor Signs Bill Last Week Dealing With Opioid Prescriptions

April 27, 2018 – 9:34 pm
It would require health care providers to have discussions with patients before writing an opioid prescription.

Annapolis, Md (KM). It’s something doctors and other health care providers don’t often discuss with their patients, but now they’ll be required to do so under a bill signed into law last week by Governor Larry Hogan. It would require physicians, dentists, nurses and other medical professionals who prescribe opioid pain killers to their patients to discuss with them the risks of addiction from these drugs. They would also need to offer a non-opioid pain relievers if they’re available.

Read complete article here.


Elaine Pocyziki Featured in Real Woman Magazine

Women Are At Risk In The Opioid Crisis

The opioid epidemic is one of the worst public health crises in American history. How did it take hold, and what can we do to avoid dangerous and deadly consequences for ourselves and our loved ones? Real Woman investigates.

Read complete article here.


CDC Releases New Study on Opioid Overdoses

A CDC study came out today on opioid overdoses: https://www.cdc.gov/vitalsigns/index.html.

A few key points:

  • Opioid overdoses went up 30% from July 2016 through September 2017 in 52 areas in 45 states.
  • The Midwestern region witnessed opioid overdoses increase 70% from July 2016 through September 2017.
  • Opioid overdoses in large cities increased by 54%
  • Overdoses in people ages 25-34 (↑ 31%), 35-54 (↑36%), and 55 and over (↑32%)

Prevent Opioid Abuse Calls on House of Delegates to Pass HB 653 Arming Patients and Parents with the Information Needed to Prevent Opioid Addiction Say ‘Patients and Parents Have the Right to Know’

MEDIA RELEASE

For Immediate Release:

MEDIA CONTACT:

Rob Horowitz

rhorowitz99@yahoo.com,

401-595-5026

Prevent Opioid Abuse Calls on House of Delegates to Pass HB 653 Arming Patients and Parents with the Information Needed to Prevent Opioid Addiction

Say ‘Patients and Parents Have the Right to Know’

Annapolis, MD – Prevent Opioid Abuse, a national organization working to educate patients and parents about the risks of opioid-based painkillers and the availability of non-opioid alternatives, urged speedy adoption of HB 653. The legislation is being heard in the Health & Government Operations Committee today.

Sponsored by Delegate Karen Lewis Young, (D-3A), the legislation would require prescribers to inform patients, and parents of minor children, about the risk of addiction before an opioid is prescribed and when appropriate, discuss the availability of non-opioid alternative pain relief treatments. This common-sense requirement enables patients and parents to recognize signs of addiction and alerts them to less risky alternative methods of pain relief.

Prevent Opioid Abuse Founder Elaine Pozycki said, “This common-sense requirement enables patients and parents to recognize signs of addiction and alerts them to less risky alternative methods of pain relief. People have the right to know this lifesaving information in real time. I urge its speedy passage.”

“Unfortunately, doctors rarely discuss the addiction potential of opioids before prescribing them,” said Andrew Kolodny, MD, Co-Founder of Physicians for Responsible Prescribing and a Senior Adviser to Prevent Opioid Abuse. “Requiring this conversation will not only result in better informed parents, patients and prescribers, it will save lives and spare many families from the devastating impact of opioid addiction.”

“Prescribers are the gatekeepers in promoting responsible use. Therefore, it is critical that they play a role in minimizing the rate of addiction,” said, Delegate Lewis Young. “Approximately 85% of those who have an opioid addiction were originally introduced through a medical prescription.”.

Lewis Young added, “Research has demonstrated that better information can be effective in ensuring that patients understand the risks associated with opioid medications and improving communication between providers and their patients. That is what my legislation will promote.”

The over-prescribing of opioid-based pain relievers, such as Oxycodone and Vicodin, is the primary cause of today’s epidemic of opioid addiction, both to opioid-based painkillers and their illegal street cousin, heroin. More than 200 million prescriptions for opioid-based painkillers are written annually in the United States, and Americans take more than 80 percent of the opioid-based painkillers used globally, despite representing just 5 percent of the world’s population.

The results of this overprescribing can be seen right here in Maryland. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Prevention, more than 2,000 people died from drug overdoses in Maryland in 2017, making it the state with the 7th highest overdose rate in the nation. Nationally, overdoses of prescription painkillers alone have increased by 500% over the past 17 years, resulting in more than 200,000 deaths in that time period, the CDC reports.

HB 653 is based on similar laws that have been adopted by New Jersey, Rhode Island and Nevada. The National Opioid Commission has made the proposed requirement for a conversation between prescriber and patient before an opioid is prescribed one of its major national recommendations.

The legislation’s co-sponsors, include Delegates Angel, Barron, Cullison, Fraser–Hidalgo, Gibson, Kelly, Lafferty, Mautz, McMillan, Metzgar, Morales, Platt, Robinson, Sample–Hughes, Tarlau, Turner, and Vogt. A companion bill, SB 522 ,was heard by the Senate Education, Health & Environmental Affairs Committee last week.

 


Maryland lawmakers tackle opioid legislation


Prevent Opioid Abuse Applauds Introduction of Legislation Giving Patients and Parents the Information They Need to Prevent Opioid Addiction

MEDIA RELEASE

For Immediate Release:

MEDIA CONTACT:
Rob Horowitz
rhorowitz99@yahoo.com,
401-595- 5026

Prevent Opioid Abuse Applauds Introduction of Legislation Giving Patients and Parents the Information They Need to Prevent Opioid Addiction

Calls on Maryland General Assembly to Pass SB 522/HB 653

Annapolis, MD – Prevent Opioid Abuse, a national organization working to educate patients and
parents about the risks of opioid-based painkillers and the availability of non-opioid alternatives,
applauded today’s introduction of SB 522.

Sponsored by Senator Katherine Klausmeier (D-8), the legislation would require prescribers to
inform patients, and parents of minor children, about the risk of addiction before an opioid is
prescribed and when appropriate, discuss the availability of non-opioid alternative pain relief
treatments. This common-sense requirement enables patients and parents to recognize signs of
addiction and alerts them to less risky alternative methods of pain relief.

“Requiring a conversation between doctors and patients and parents before an opioid is
prescribed is a simple, but extremely effective measure that will result in saving lives,” said
Prevent Opioid Abuse Founder Elaine Pozycki.

The over-prescribing of opioid-based pain relievers, such as Oxycodone and Vicodin, is the
primary cause of today’s epidemic of opioid addiction, both to opioid-based painkillers and their
illegal street cousin, heroin.  More than 200 million prescriptions for opioid-based painkillers are
written annually in the United States, and Americans take more than 80 percent of the opioid-
based painkillers used globally, despite representing just 5 percent of the world’s population.

The results of this overprescribing can be seen right here in Maryland. According to the Centers
for Disease Control (CDC) and Prevention, more than 2,000 people died from drug overdoses in
Maryland in 2017, making it the state with the 7 th highest overdose rate in the nation. Nationally,
overdoses of prescription painkillers alone have increased by 500% over the past 17 years,
resulting in more than 200,000 deaths in that time period, the CDC reports.

“All Maryland patients and parents of patients have the right to know that the medicine they are
being prescribed can lead to dependency and addiction. They should also be made aware that
there are opioid-free alternatives that are available in many situations,” Sen. Klausmeier said.
“My legislation ensures that this life-saving information is provided at the time it matters most
— when an opioid-pain reliever is about to be prescribed. To ensure this essential conversation
between patient and prescriber occurs, I will work for this bill’s speedy passage into law.”
SB 522 is based on similar laws that have been adopted by New Jersey, Rhode Island and
Nevada. The National Opioid Commission has made the proposed requirement for a
conversation between prescriber and patient before an opioid is prescribed one of its major
national recommendations.

SB 522 will be heard by the Senate Education, Health & Environmental Affairs Committee
tomorrow, February 15 at 1:00 PM ET. Its co-sponsors, include Senators DeGrange, Middleton,
Simonaire, Smith, Young, and Zucker.  A companion bill, HB 653, sponsored by Delegate Karen
Young (D-3A) has been introduced and will be heard by the Health & Government Operations
Committee on Feb. 21.

“Unfortunately, doctors rarely discuss the addiction potential of opioids before prescribing
them,” said Andrew Kolodny, MD, Co-Founder of Physicians for Responsible Prescribing and a
Senior Adviser to Prevent Opioid Abuse. “Requiring this conversation will not only result in
better informed parents, patients and prescribers, it will save lives and spare many families from
the devastating impact of opioid addiction.”


Nevada Passes Conversation Requirement as Part of Comprehensive Controlled Substance Legislation

Governor Brian Sandoval and the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services today announced an important reminder that the provisions of Assembly Bill 474, the Controlled Substance Abuse Prevention Act, will go into effect January 1, 2018. This measure was introduced by the Governor during his 2017 State of the State address, unanimously passed through both houses of the Legislature, and was signed into law on June 16, 2017.

Read complete article here.

Read Governor Sandoval’s letter to Elaine Pozycki


U.S. Drug Overdoses Soar Past 60,000

From Get Smart About Drugs:

In 2016, there were more than 63,000 deadly drug overdoses in the nation, according to the latest numbers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.image of woman passed out from a pill overdose

The staggering overdose rate is three times the rate of overdose deaths in 1999.

Read full article here.Read full article here.


Michigan Adopts Right to Know Law for Youth and their Parents–becoming 5th State to Pass a Conversation Requirement

From the December 27 Detroit News:

“Lt. Gov. Brian Calley signed a 10-bill package Wednesday aimed at reducing Michigan’s rapidly growing opioid addiction by requiring doctors and the state to better track and control the flow of opioid-based prescription drugs.

Calley signed six bills that will collectively require doctors to use a new online prescription tracking state database, set up a legitimate doctor-patient relationship and limit the number of pills dispensed in a given seven-day period. It comes as the number of heroin and prescription opioid overdose deaths in Michigan has doubled during the past five years.”