Missouri is the last state to create a monitoring program to help spot the misuse of prescription drugs. But some public health experts warn that the nation’s programs are forcing people addicted to opioids to seek deadlier street options.
Two intractable failings of the U.S. health care system — addiction treatment and medical costs — come to a head in the ER, where patients desperate for addiction treatment arrive, only to find the facility may not be equipped to deal with substance use or, if they are, treatment is prohibitively expensive.
A report from the Government Accountability Office paints a picture of an already strained behavioral health system struggling after the pandemic struck to meet the treatment needs of millions of Americans with conditions like alcohol use disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder.
Pennsylvania’s Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs has allowed providers to continue operating despite repeated violations and harm to clients.
The measure, which took effect Jan. 1, removes loopholes that made it easy for insurers to use arcane company guidelines to avoid paying for care. Patients now have an easier way to challenge those denials.
Hospitals across the country are seeing rising admissions for alcoholic liver disease, which encompasses hepatitis, cirrhosis and other conditions.
The statistic is accurate but experts say other factors make it difficult to say indicators to think about that make it hard to say it’s a “huge win.”
President Donald Trump has, for now at least, become a realist on the extent of the COVID-19 crisis around the country, and he is urging Americans to socially distance and wear masks. Meanwhile, on Capitol Hill, Republicans facing a July 31 deadline are scrambling to come together on their version of the next COVID relief bill. Joanne Kenen of Politico, Margot Sanger-Katz of The New York Times and Tami Luhby of CNN join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss this and more. Also, Rovner interviews NPR’s Pam Fessler, author of the new book “Carville’s Cure,” which traces the history of the United States’ only federal leprosarium.
The coronavirus has forced drug rehabilitation centers to scale back operations or temporarily close, leaving people who have another potentially deadly disease — addiction — with fewer opportunities for help.
Experts say a bit of extra drinking isn’t a problem for many people, but they recommend watching out for specific behaviors that signal addiction.