Policy Watch

July 26, 2019 Policy Watch

CHERISH Workshop Addresses an ‘Unfortunate Reality’ of the Addiction Treatment Industry

Funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse and established in 2015, CHERISH is a five year collaboration of researchers from the Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics (LDI) of the University of Pennsylvania, Weill Cornell Medical College, Boston Medical Center, and the University of Miami. Their work is focused on studying the health economics […]

April 27, 2018 Policy Watch

Dentists Tackle Opioid Epidemic

Last month, the American Dental Association (ADA) announced a new policy on opioid prescription. This is the latest in a series of statements issued by the ADA in response to the prominent role of dentistry in the opioid epidemic. In addition to mandatory continuing education and prescription limits, the ADA indicated its support for “dentists […]

December 11, 2017 Policy Watch

Burden of Opioid Epidemic Mapped in Massachusetts Using a Unique Dataset

Using a legislatively-mandated, integrated dataset, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health has published its first comprehensive look at the state’s opioid-related overdoses between 2011 and 2015. The dataset was created as part of 2015 “Chapter 55” legislation. It links information on an individual level across diverse state databases, including mental health data, jail and prison data, vital records, substance […]

November 27, 2017 Policy Watch

How To Talk and Write about Substance Use Disorder

News and feature stories about the opioid epidemic appear daily in a variety of media outlets. To draw interest, these outlets often using provocative language to describe substance use disorders and those affected by substance use across the country. The 2017 Associated Press Stylebook, however, now encourages journalists and the media to use person-first language such […]

November 13, 2017 Policy Watch

Insurers Make Historic Commitment to Improve Access and Quality of Treatment for Substance Use Disorders

In a groundbreaking announcement, 12 large insurers, covering over 240 million lives, pledged to adopt eight evidence-based “National Principles of Care” for the treatment of substance use disorder (SUD). The initiative is designed to improve care for the 21 million Americans who have an SUD, only 11% of whom receive any treatment at all. The […]

September 25, 2017 Policy Watch

Abuse Deterrent Opioids: A Hard Sell

One strategy to combat the opioid epidemic is to change the formulation of opioids to deter abuse. Reformulations can make opioids harder or less pleasant to inject, snort, or chew, thereby reducing common methods of abuse. Since 2010, the FDA has approved 10 opioid abuse deterrent formulations, which are considerably more expensive than regular brand […]

September 7, 2017 Policy Watch

Addressing Gaps in Evidence-Based Opioid Policy and Practice

Although evidence from health policy research should inform policymaking, researchers and policymakers don’t always communicate. A conference sponsored by the Center for Health Economics of Treatment Interventions for Substance Use Disorder, HCV, and HIV (CHERISH) – a NIDA-funded Center of Excellence – and hosted by the Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics (LDI) sought to […]

June 14, 2017 Policy Watch

CHERISH Conference on Substance Use Disorder Treatment Research

In the opening plenary panel of the CHERISH (Center for Health Economics of Treatment Interventions for Substance Use Disorder, HCV and HIV) conference on evidence-based policy and practice are (l to r) Daniel Polsky, PhD, moderator and Executive Director of the University of Pennsylvania’s Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics (LDI); Tom McLellan, PhD, Chairman of the Board and […]

June 12, 2017 Policy Watch

Philadelphia Task Force Issues Report on Opioids

The opioid epidemic is a national problem, but solutions may be local. In Philadelphia, the Mayor’s Task Force to Combat the Opioid Epidemic recently released a report with 18 recommendations for a “comprehensive and coordinated plan to reduce opioid use disorder and its associated morbidity and mortality.” The report focuses on Philadelphia, but draws on data […]

March 17, 2017 Policy Watch

Philadelphia Tackles Opioid Crisis

Opioids have emerged as one of the greatest public health threats facing the United States. Nationally, fatal overdoses involving opioids have quadrupled since 1999. Opioids contributed to over 33,000 deaths in 2015 alone. In Philadelphia, the numbers are equally sobering. Although the final toxicology reports are pending, approximately 900 deaths in 2016 have been attributed to unintentional drug […]

March 10, 2017 Policy Watch

New York State HepC Summit Calls for Elimination

Public health officials, elected leaders and medical professionals across New York State gathered in Albany, New York on February 7, 2017 to discuss hepatitis C in the state for the first ever New York State hepatitis C virus (HCV) summit. In a consensus statement, the committee that organized the summit called on Governor Andrew Cuomo to […]

February 24, 2017 Policy Watch

SAMHSA Substance Use Data Redaction Final Rule

What if there was a disease affecting 27.1 million people in the United States, that killed over 33,000 people in one year or about 91 people a day? What if this same disease cost the United States healthcare system about $78.5 billion? What if researchers could not study this disease in order to provide information on the effectiveness or cost of […]

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