A surge in accidental opioid overdose deaths in Texas is showing no signs of slowing down, and Texas physicians advocate that increasing the availability of life-saving, overdose-reversing drugs like naloxone, as well as addiction treatment programs, can help.
A new $23 million public awareness campaign from the Texas Health and Human Services Commission will focus on “reducing stigma, building community connection and resilience, and changing social norms to prevent substance use.” How the money's being used.
Attorney General Ken Paxton has announced Texas’ share of the Global Opioid Litigation Settlement Agreement, which includes more than $1 billion from three major drug distributors. The settlement, involving 52 U.S. states and territories, was signed in July 2021.
The number of opioid prescriptions has dropped 44% since 2011, yet there are still more drug-related overdose deaths than ever – a clear sign policymakers should work to remove barriers to care for patients, according to the American Medical Association’s 2021 Overdose Epidemic Report.
In an effort to address the very real and debilitating crisis caused by the misuse of pain medicines, the Texas Legislature has passed legislation to mandate that all prescribers and pharmacists check the state's Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP) before prescribing or dispensing certain medications.
NOTE: The mandate is effective Sept. 1, 2019, for prescribers and pharmacists. It applies to opioids, benzodiazepines, barbiturates, and carisoprodol (Soma), not to all controlled substances.
To help physicians set up accounts and use the new PDMP website Allison Benz, executive director of the Texas Pharmacy Board. demonstrates the new site in this brief, informative TMA-produced video. This five-minute video shows physicians how to set up, use and navigate the site.
Recent questions about Opioids issues:
What happened to the Texas Controlled Substances Registration (CSR) program?
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Read Opioid Articles
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services published a Guide for Clinicians on the Appropriate Dosage Reduction or Discontinuation of Long-Term Opioid Analgesics. The guide covers important issues to consider when changing a patient’s chronic pain therapy, including issues to consider prior to making a change, when initiating a change, and as a patient’s dosage is being tapered.
Read the Complete Guide Here
Links below provide timely information from fellow health care leaders in addressing the opioid epidemic:
American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) Chronic Pain Resources
American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons (AAOS)
American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO)
American Society of Interventional Pain Physicians (ASIPP)
American Society of Anesthesiologists
American College of Emergency Physicians
American College of Surgeons
A new, free mobile app provides immediate access to information about medication-assisted treatment (MAT) for opioid use disorder.
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