Advertisment

The Impact of the Opioid Crisis on Healthcare Costs and the Steps Towards Mitigation

author-image
Dr. Jessica Nelson
New Update
NULL

The Impact of the Opioid Crisis on Healthcare Costs and the Steps Towards Mitigation

Advertisment

The Opioid Crisis and its Economic Impact on Healthcare

Advertisment

The opioid addiction epidemic has had a profound effect on society, particularly in the field of healthcare. Not only has it resulted in an increased number of hospital admissions and treatment programs, it has also led to a significant rise in spending on emergency medicine. This has strained health care resources, contributing to the escalating costs of healthcare system.

The prevalence of opioid addiction has resulted in a surge in medical interventions, all of which are contributing factors to the soaring healthcare costs. This situation calls for immediate attention and action to mitigate the economic burden on the health care system.

Legal Settlements as a Step Towards Resolution

Advertisment

The gravity of the situation has led to legal actions against companies linked to the opioid crisis. Recently, Attorney General Josh Kaul announced a $350 million national settlement with Publicis Health, a marketing firm, to resolve investigations into the firm's role in the prescription opioid crisis. Wisconsin is set to receive more than $6 million from this settlement to help address the opioid crisis. Publicis will also disclose internal documents detailing its work for opioid companies and will cease accepting client work related to opioid-based controlled substances. So far, Wisconsin has secured close to $750 million in legal settlements with drug manufacturers and others for their roles in the crisis.

Similarly, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel announced a $350 million national settlement with Publicis Health. Michigan will receive nearly $11.7 million from the settlement to help address the opioid crisis. Furthermore, Publicis is required to disclose on a public website thousands of internal documents detailing its work for opioid companies like Purdue Pharma and will stop accepting client work related to opioid-based Schedule II or other Schedule II narcotics.

Policy Changes for Opioid Treatment

Advertisment

Recognizing the need for accessible and effective treatments for opioid use disorder (OUD), the Health and Human Services Department has issued a final rule concerning Medications for the Treatment of Opioid Use Disorder. The rule modifies and updates provisions related to Opioid Treatment Program accreditation and certification, making flexibilities put forth during the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency permanent, and expanding access to care and evidence-based treatment for OUD. This final rule will come into effect on April 2, 2024.

Utilizing Settlement Funds for Opioid Crisis Mitigation

Settlement funds are being directed to address the opioid crisis. For instance, Massachusetts will receive nearly $8 million from the settlement with Publicis Health to help address the opioid crisis. The settlement will fund the state’s Opioid Recovery and Remediation Fund. This fund aims to provide support for opioid use disorder prevention, treatment, recovery, and harm reduction efforts throughout Massachusetts.

Over the last 20 years, more than 20,000 Massachusetts residents have died from opioid-related overdoses. The state, recognizing the gravity of the crisis, has reached legal settlements with opioid manufacturers and others that will return more than $1 billion to the state and local communities. These funds will be directed towards efforts to mitigate the opioid crisis.

The opioid crisis represents a significant challenge to our healthcare system and society at large. However, through legal actions, policy changes, and the allocation of resources towards prevention and treatment, steps are being taken to address this issue and reduce the burden on our healthcare system.

Advertisment
Chat with Dr. Medriva !