Local recovery center responds to DeWine task force recommendati - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Local recovery center responds to DeWine task force recommendations

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AUSTINTOWN TWP., Ohio -

New recommendations were released for insurance companies on how they can help combat the opioid epidemic.

The recommendations, created by Attorney General Mike DeWine's Insurance Task Force on Opioid Reduction, outline how insurance companies and help through prevention, targeted intervention, and improved treatment.

According to the Associated Press, the recommendations are as follows:

Prevention

Insurers should cover and encourage, where appropriate, the use of both nonopioid pain medications and alternative treatments to manage pain.

Insurers should identify and develop targeted education efforts for prescribers who write a high volume of opioid prescriptions compared to others in their specialty.

Insurers should ensure providers are aware of and follow appropriate opioid prescribing guidelines, which should be more uniform.

Insurers should develop targeted prevention efforts to reduce the number of opioid prescriptions written for adolescents and young adults who are “opioid-naive.”

Insurers should develop education programs aimed at individuals who are receiving their first opioid prescription to make them aware of the risks of long-term opioid use.

Insurers should work together to develop common, easy-to-understand communications strategies to educate the public about the risks of opioids.

Intervention

Insurers should educate prescribers about properly decreasing opioid dosages to reduce patients’ dependence on opioids.

Insurers should create, use, and continually refine programs to reduce the practice of doctor or pharmacy “shopping” by patients who are seeking opioids.

Insurers should use multi-disciplinary teams to coordinate care for members with opioid-use disorder.

Insurers should direct obstetricians and gynecologists to screen pregnant patients for opioid use throughout pregnancy to reduce the serious health risks for infants.

Insurers should accept a standard authorization form for disclosure and use of protected health information to better coordinate care.

Insurers should help government partners to coordinate substance-use treatment for patients preparing to re-enter the community after a period of incarceration.

The General Assembly should amend state statute so that commercial insurance companies have access to prescription information contained in the Ohio Automated Rx Reporting System, the system designed to collect data on outpatient prescriptions for controlled substances.

Treatment

Insurers should eliminate or expedite prior authorizations for accessing Medication Assisted Treatment to reduce the amount of time a patient must wait to receive treatment.

Insurers should increase reimbursement rates to adequately cover the cost of providing substance use disorder treatment.

Carolyn Givens of the Neil Kennedy Recovery Center that believes the task force recommendations are a positive move, and that continuing a conversation is one of the biggest steps in battling the epidemic.

"We have to take away the burden of stigma for people who are suffering from addiction, any kind of depression, or any type of mental illness," says Givens, and once we are able to alleviate the stigma, more people will be able to go in to care".

The Neil Kennedy recovery centers want to remind people that addiction is a disease, and help is available.

For information about recovery, people can call the residential and sub-acute detox site at 330-744-1181.

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