10.4% of Chronic Pain Patients Prescribed Opioids Also Take Illegal Drugs

An article recently came out in Business Insurance detailing a study that revealed 10.4% of people with chronic pain who were prescribed opioids also tested positive for illegal drugs. This sounded like a smoking gun on how opioids can often lead to addiction. When I dug deeper, the data was a little surprising. Of the total

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Regulation of Opioids Increasing

Recently, the CDC published the first national standards for prescribing opioids, new standards specifically dedicated to confronting this crisis. This set of guidelines will provide much greater leverage going forward when interacting with non-compliant providers, much as evidence-based guidelines have afforded crucial controls for assuring patients receive appropriate care. We are also starting to see some

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Main Cause of Addiction: Loneliness

This is a fascinating article​ about the roots of addiction.  The article’s premise is that the main cause of drug use and addiction is not the drug itself, it is the lack of human connection a person has at the time. “Professor Peter Cohen argues that human beings have a deep need to bond and form connections.

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You Know It’s Bad When…

We are all aware that Super Bowl ads cost an obscene amount of money.  $5 million for just 30 seconds of air-time. That is why I was so surprised by one of the commercials that aired during the game. It was an “educational PSA-type” ad, not for opioids, but for Opioid Induced Constipation (OIC)​.  This minute-long

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CDC Reports a Record-Breaking Year for U.S. Overdose Deaths

While the mainstream media tends to focus on the latest hot-button issues, there are much larger issues quietly but significantly impacting our society. We’ve heard that: Shark attacks are up in the US (53 in 2013, vs. 42 in 2012). Terrorism and mass shootings (or “multi-party shooting incidents”) are responsible for 457 deaths in the US in

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If You Can’t Beat Them, Buy Them: Why Some Drug Costs Are Going Up

I have done some analysis on pharmacy costs for clients recently. During that time, I noticed an increase in the cost per prescription for some drugs. Our pharmacy partners have shown the same trend in their data. This upsurge made no sense to me. Many drugs are coming off of patent, meaning generics of those

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Why the Pharmacy Stop is a Necessary One

A growing trend in our industry is “Physician Dispensing.” This is when a medical provider sells the drugs from their office instead of writing a prescription and sending them to the pharmacy.Some companies will go to physician offices and set up “vending machines” with the most common drugs to be sold.  Then physicians get a

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