President Trump declares the opioid crisis a national emergency and what this means for individuals suffering from addiction.
NBC News is reporting that President Trump has declared the opioid crisis a national emergency. This will allow federal money to be directed towards expanding treatment facilities and supplying police officers with the anti-overdose remedy naloxone. It will also relax federal rules that that restrict where Medicaid recipients can get addiction treatment. This follows executive action taken by President Obama last year.
We have blogged about the opioid crisis and workers’ comp on several different occasions. Claimants get trapped in a downward spiral when they suffer from chronic pain symptoms and become dependents on powerful narcotic pain medication. Addiction treatment is covered under workers’ comp and this includes inpatient treatment facilities.
Progress is being made on the state level with a 37% drop in opioid prescriptions since 2009. The Michigan Workers’ Compensation Agency published new administrative rules in 2014 prohibiting reimbursements for opioid treatment beyond 90 days unless detailed physician reporting requirements and other processes are met. A criminal unit has even been created by the attorney general to specifically address opioid crimes.
It is also no secret that medical costs are much higher when are an opioid has been prescribed. Insurance companies are now taking a more aggressive approach to claim review. This has led to some of our clients getting their medications unfairly cut-off.
We believe doctors must be free to treat patients as individuals and a one size fits all approach does not work. It is clear more needs to be done to address the opioid crisis and ensure patients are getting quality treatment. This is especially true now that health care reform is back in the news and millions of people could lose their Medicaid insurance.
Michigan Workers Comp Lawyers never charges a fee to evaluate a potential case. Our law firm has represented injured and disabled workers exclusively for more than 35 years. Call (844) 201-9497 for a free consultation today.
Photo courtesy of Creative Commons, by Charles Williams.