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posted by martyb on Friday July 08 2016, @10:27AM   Printer-friendly
from the kicking-is-hard dept.

The Obama administration is loosening restrictions on buprenorphine/Suboxone prescriptions in order to fight the "heroin epidemic", while calling on Congress to act on a request for $1.1 billion in additional funding for opioid treatment programs across the U.S.:

The Obama administration is making it easier for people addicted to opioids to get treatment. Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell announced new rules Wednesday to loosen restrictions on doctors who treat people addicted to heroin and opioid painkillers with the medication buprenorphine. Doctors who are licensed to prescribe the drug, which is sold mostly under the brand name Suboxone, will be allowed to treat as many as 275 patients a year. That's almost triple the current limit of 100, and HHS estimated that as many as 70,000 more people may have access to the drug as a result.

"There are a number of ways we are trying to increase access to medication-assisted treatment," said Michael Botticelli, the director of national drug control policy, on a conference call with reporters. "This rule itself expands access and gets more physicians to reach more patients."

Suboxone is itself an opioid. It eases withdrawal symptoms and cravings, but doesn't make people high. [...] Botticelli said an average 129 people a day die from opioid overdoses.

Here is some basic information about the differences between buprenorphine (Suboxone) and Naloxone (Narcan).

White House Announces Heroin Response Strategy for the US Northeast
Alarming Rise in Death Rates for Middle-Aged White Americans
Kroger Supermarkets to Carry Naloxone Without a Prescription
4/20: Half-Baked Headline

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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 08 2016, @01:40PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 08 2016, @01:40PM (#371776)

    .... How about the Federal Government staying the hell out of telling Doctors what they can and can't do according to their best medical judgment? You know, relying on the States to regulate that the way it was intended to be??? And relying on Science to control what the standards of care should be???

    Nah, not enough bureaucracy for that. HHS/CMS is more powerful than the NSA, some ways.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 08 2016, @02:47PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 08 2016, @02:47PM (#371802)

    Remember the last time the government tried to solve drug addiction? I don't think it worked that well. I don't the government does a good job at solving any issues tbh fam

  • (Score: 2, Funny) by Ethanol-fueled on Friday July 08 2016, @02:47PM

    by Ethanol-fueled (2792) on Friday July 08 2016, @02:47PM (#371803) Homepage

    This is a deliberate attempt by the crooked administration of Baraq Hussein Soetoro to create a society of addicts (as if they could become even more addicted) so that they will be even more subservient to the will of the deep-state.

    This is why he had the U.S. military "liberate" all of those poppy fields in Afghanistan. Since the U.S. "drug interdiction" there, global heroin production has skyrocketed, and you can bet your ass that some arms of the U.S. government have a hand in making money from it.

    There are no accidents in politics.

  • (Score: 1, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 08 2016, @03:11PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 08 2016, @03:11PM (#371816)

    What makes you think the states, with far fewer resources, would do a better job regulating health care than the Feds?

    As for "science controlling the standards of care", we already have that. Just ask the pharmaceutical companies.

  • (Score: 1, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 08 2016, @09:06PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 08 2016, @09:06PM (#372057)

    Its not even really the "Federal Government", its specifically the DEA, agents who have not just zero medical knowledge or education or certifications but negative knowledge on the subject through willful ignorance, committing medical fraud by telling doctors what they can, cannot, and how much they can prescribe, and extorting doctors into complying with their ignorant and unreasonable demands by robbing doctors of their freedom, careers, and futures if they don't. This is just one of many reasons why the DEA must be dismantled as soon as possible.