A House committee on April 25, 2018, advanced 57 bills aimed at dealing with the opioid epidemic ravaging the entire country. However, the Energy and Commerce Committee’s health subcommittee couldn’t complete work on the all the proposed 63 bills. The 57 bills focus on a wide range of areas to combat the ongoing menace, including initiatives to spread awareness about the dangers of overdoses, expand professional counseling and treatment, and incentivize the use of non-opioid pain management options.
However, the Democrats protested that the panel didn’t bother to consider several bills led by them. “It appears there are several Medicaid bills sponsored by Democratic members on the list,” said Representative Frank Pallone, who also happens to be the top Democrat on the panel. Democrats also objected to some of the bills, with the main objection being the short duration taken to examine their impact. Pallone said that certain bills were short of technical assistance from federal agencies and it would be unwise to push them without considering the consequences.
One of the bills cleared by the committee aims at allocating grants to federal, state and local agencies to set up laboratories for detecting fentanyl in an efficient manner, given that the nation has seen a surge in fentanyl overdoses in recent years. Another important bipartisan bill that was advanced seeks to expand access to birth control for women who give birth to babies dependent on opioids. Some of the bills were particularly designed for rural populations, such as enhanced telehealth options. There were others that emphasized the need for non-addictive pain management therapies, including creation of regulatory guidance for drug makers who manufacture non-opioid painkillers.
Kicking menace of addiction
Most Americans view opioids as the sole means to relieve chronic pain arising from a surgery, an injury, or a severe health condition, such as cancer. Though prescription opioids may seem safe for short-term use, prolonged use or misuse can eventually cause addiction. In such a situation, seeking assistance from a reputed drug abuse rehabilitation center can go a long way in helping the drug user experience freedom from the shackles of addiction.
In the wake of the skyrocketing rates of addiction to prescription medications across the country, there is an urgent need to ensure that doctors, pharmacists, and drug makers act responsibly to reduce misuse of opioids by educating people about their addictive nature. Moreover, experts believe the best way to fight addiction is to incorporate evidence-based screening techniques in the consultation process. Doctors need to identify high-risk patients who are vulnerable to addiction, and also follow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Guidelines for prescribing opioids.
Drug overdose deaths involving opioids continue to increase in the country. In 2016, the number of overdose deaths involving opioids, including prescription painkillers and heroin, was five times higher than in 1999. Between 2000 and 2016, more than 600,000 people died from drug overdoses in the country. The only way to deal with opioid addiction is to seek professional treatment. Sovereign Health understands the plight of someone unable to discontinue the use of addictive opioids despite the negative impact on his/her life. Our customized NAD treatment for addiction is designed to treat a person holistically. If you or your loved one is battling addiction to any prescription drug, call at our 24/7 helpline or chat online to know about the most effective therapies at our state-of-the-art rapid detox centers.