NYS Senate releases heroin and opioid addiction recommendations


The New York State Senate Task Force on Heroin and Opioid Addiction say the state could do more to fight the opioid crisis.

The panel calls for stricter oversight of opioid distribution among other things.

In their annual report, the panel called for 11 suggestions to help end the crisis:

  • Increase resources to support the recruitment and retention of healthcare professionals trained to treat substance use disorder;
  • Upgrade the I-STOP Prescription Monitoring Program to improve interstate monitoring of potential over-prescribing of opioids;
  • Maximize federal funding to help support more children at the state’s newly-established Infant Recovery Centers;
  • Reduce the cost of naloxone to ensure greater access to this life-saving overdose-reversal medication and enhance public education and outreach on naloxone use and expiration to ensure effective treatment;
  • Explore the further limitation of initial opioid prescriptions for acute pain to three days from the current seven days, with certain medical exceptions;
  • Require enhanced treatment plans for patients after the first month of opioid use, instead of waiting until the current 90-day standard;
  • Further address addiction in rural parts of the state by improving access to treatment, such as establishing Centers for Excellence on Substance Use Disorder;
  • Authorize hospital-community-healthcare-SUD treatment professional collaboration programs to facilitate innovation in meeting community health care needs;
  • Improve the use and collection of data to better identify, investigate, and prosecute high-volume opioid prescribers;
  • Enhance and create appropriate criminal penalties for drug dealers who sell substances that result in death; and
  • Expand health insurance coverage options for medical marijuana as a method to reduce overall usage of opioid medications.

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