THURSDAY, Aug. 11, 2022 (HealthDay Information) — America has an opioid epidemic, however there’s one brilliant spot within the battle towards it: Prescriptions for these addictive medication have declined for sufferers with non-public insurance coverage.
Amid pointers over the previous decade from governments, well being methods and insurers aimed toward decreasing opioid prescriptions, earlier research have pointed to a nationwide drop in prescribing charges.
Sufferers who’re actively receiving most cancers therapies are excluded from these limits.
The brand new research included most cancers sufferers in addition to individuals with different persistent ache. It discovered that total prescribing charges nonetheless dropped.
“We discover that from 2012 to 2019 there have been declines in opioid prescribing for people with persistent non-cancer ache and people with most cancers with out corresponding will increase in receipt of non-opioid therapies,” authors Sachini Bandara and Emma McGinty of Johns Hopkins Bloomberg Faculty of Public Well being in Baltimore, and Dr. Mark Bicket of the College of Michigan, wrote.
The research was printed Aug. 10 in PLOS ONE .
“These findings spotlight the necessity to higher perceive how declines in prescribing are influencing the administration of ache amongst these affected person populations, notably because the [U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] is at the moment updating opioid prescribing pointers for persistent ache,” the authors mentioned in a journal information launch.
For the research, the researchers analyzed insurance coverage claims from 100 non-public corporations. They checked out sufferers with most cancers and people with different varieties of ache, together with low again ache, neuropathic ache, complications or arthritis.
Between 2012 and 2019, the share of people that have been prescribed an opioid for cancer-related ache dropped from 86% to 78.7%, the research discovered. Those that obtained opioid prescriptions for different varieties of ache dropped from 49.7% to 30.5%.
Whereas charges of non-opioid ache medicine have been regular for individuals with non-cancer ache, researchers discovered they rose for most cancers sufferers from 74.4% to 78.8%.
For many who nonetheless obtained opioids, fewer individuals obtained extraordinarily excessive doses or greater than a one-week provide, the researchers reported.
They mentioned extra research is required to find out how the revised pointers influenced ache administration in each teams.
The U.S. Division of Well being and Human Companies has extra on the opioid epidemic.
SOURCE: PLOS ONE, information launch, Aug. 10, 2022