The Opioid Crisis | Top News of the WeekPR Newswire PR Newswire • November 8, 2019
New White House Website Provides Resources for Addiction and Recovery
The White House has upped the ante in the fight against the current opioid crisis. The Trump administration recently launched a new website devoted to providing resources for addicts in recovery. According to the Centers for Disease Control, roughly 130 Americans die each day from opioid abuse, and the epidemic continues to sweep the nation at alarming rates. The site, FindTreatment.gov, was launched October 30, and according to Kellyanne Conway, counselor to President Donald Trump and also head of the administration’s response to the drug crisis, will offer millions of Americans suffering from opioid addiction and their families local options for treatment and recovery.
The site streamlines the database maintained by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration of more than 13,000 licensed treatment providers. The site is also equipped with tools that allow targeted searches based on specific treatments.
El Chapo’s Son Detained in Fentanyl Bust, Escapes Extradition to U.S.
The son of notorious cartel kingpin, Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman was briefly apprehended for his alleged involvement in smuggling potent opioid fentanyl, among other narcotics, into the United States.
Oviedo “El Ratón” Guzman was arrested by the Mexican National Guard in a raid on his home in the Mexican state of Sinaloa as the result of an extradition order placed by the United States. However, within minutes of descending on the Guzman compound, Sinaloa cartel gunmen, led by El Chapo’s other son, Archivaldo, surrounded the property demanding for Guzman’s release.
Video clips depict utter chaos throughout the city, as members of the cartel waged war in retaliation for Guzman’s attempted arrest. It is reported that at least 13 people were killed in the attack. Ultimately, law enforcement could not get Archivaldo to stand down, and in an embarrassing move, aborted the failed mission and left the compound empty handed.
Since El Chapo’s conviction of a mass of drug trafficking charges that yielded a life sentence in a U.S. federal prison, his sons Oviedo and Archivaldo have taken the helm of the cartel. Both sons were named in an indictment unsealed in February accusing the pair of distributing massive amounts of marijuana, cocaine and methamphetamine in the U.S.
New Study Finds Doctors Increasingly Avoid Pain Patients
A survey conducted by Quest Diagnostics and the Center on Addiction revealed that doctors are increasingly avoiding treating chronic pain patients and not prescribing opioids for pain management, even when their condition warrants the treatment. According to the data, 81 percent of physicians are hesitant to take on new patients that are already prescribed opioids. And, of the doctors surveyed, 83 percent admitted that treating patients for chronic pain is becoming increasingly difficult in the current climate of opioid overuse and misuse. This is in direct response to the current crackdown on heavy-handed physicians that have for years recklessly overprescribed opioid medications.
In addition, the increasing hesitation of doctors to cut down on prescribing opioids is in response to the 2016 CDC guideline for prescribing opioids, which basically outlines the warnings and risks associated with continued opioid use; however, they are ignoring the caveat that sudden discontinuation of opioids can lead to harm in patients.
The survey also revealed that physicians believe their peers will continue to prescribe non-opioid alternatives to pain relief, including 85 percent who say they will use holistic treatments such as acupuncture, massage and physical therapy while 58% will use marijuana products.
Orlando Considers Suing Big Pharma for Role in Opioid Crisis
More local governments are getting involved and stepping up in the fight against the current opioid epidemic. Leaders from the Orlando City Council recently sat down to review a lawsuit against big pharma for its part in the current public health crisis. The Central Florida city, which has been hard-hit by opioid deaths and overdoses, is seeking financial compensation in a 266-page lawsuit for a wealth of damages ranging from “extensive cleanup of public parks, spaces and facilities of needles and other debris” to “payments for fraudulent or medically unnecessary prescriptions and lost productivity to Orlando’s workforce.”
The suit, which has not yet been filed, does not list an actual dollar amount, but states that the city is owed millions of dollars.
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