HHS PRIORITY 2: COMBATING AMERICA’S OPIOID CRISIS

January 03, 2019

According to preliminary data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 72,000 people in the US are predicted to have died from drug overdoses in 2017 — nearly 200 a day.

A recent article put those numbers in perspective, “In comparison more than 58,000 American soldiers died in the Vietnam War, nearly 55,000 Americans died of car crashes at the peak of such deaths in 1972, more than 43,000 died of HIV/AIDS during the epidemic’s peak in 1995, and nearly 40,000 died of guns during the peak of those deaths in 1993.”

Priority 2: Combating the Opioid Crisis

The Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) named the opioid crisis one of its 2018 top priorities; in addition to value-based care, health insurance reform, and prescription drug pricing.

As HHS explains, the drastic increase in opioid usage began in the late 1990s when pharmaceutical companies reassured the medical community that patients would not become addicted and providers began to prescribe them at greater rates. Prescriptions increased dramatically before it became clear that these medications could indeed be highly addictive.

In 2017, HHS declared a public health emergency and announced a five-point strategy for combating the crisis.

Key Priorities Areas Include:

  1. Access: Better prevention, treatment, and recovery services
  2. Data: Better data about the epidemic
  3. Pain: Better pain management
  4. Overdoses: Better targeting of overdose-reversing drugs
  5. Research: Better research on pain and addiction

Opioid Solutions for Payers, Patients, & Providers

In 2018, Telligen supported HHS in this key priority area with opioid management solutions that feature advanced analytics, evidence-based resources, health coaching, & practice-level interventions. Results from state-specific projects and interventions include:

  • Colorado: 3K fewer administrations
  • Iowa: 13% fewer hospitalizations; 50% fewer discrepancies at discharge
  • Oklahoma: Targeted practice facilitation; prescribing toolkit; training to providers, medical board, & narcotics bureau

2018 Partnerships and Projects Included:

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