Forums on Prescription Opioid Misuse Planned for May
[MMA News Now, March 28, 2013] The MMA will host three policy forums on prescription opioid abuse, addiction and diversion during the month of May in three Minnesota cities.
The forums will take place on May 2 in Minneapolis at the Ramada Plaza Minneapolis, May 9 in Rochester at The Kahler Grand Hotel and May 16 at the Holiday Inn & Suites in Duluth. Carol Falkowski, the former director of the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Division, and Drug Abuse Strategy Officer of the Minnesota Department of Human Services, will begin the discussion.
Statistics show that prescription drug abuse is the fastest growing drug problem in the U.S. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has found that approximately three out of four prescription drug overdoses are caused by prescription opioids.The American Medical Association says opioids play a role in 15,000 deaths annually, and account for more than 340,000 emergency department visits each year.
Here in Minnesota, during 2011, one in five admissions (20.2 percent) to addiction treatment programs in the Twin Cities metro area was for heroin or other opiates. This is compared to 8.7 percent of admissions in 2005.
The MMA convened a Prescription Opioid Management Advisory Task Force in December 2012 to increase physician awareness of the problem and to identify strategies to aid physician opioid prescribing and management. Physician input at the forums will support the Task Force’s ongoing work.
The prescription opioid forums are the second in a series of MMA policy forums in 2013. Future topics include: prior authorization of prescription drugs; primary care physician workforce capacity and Minnesota’s quality measurement agenda.
The forums aim to bring physicians together to discuss important issues affecting the practice of medicine in Minnesota; facilitate physician input through open, accessible and inclusive formats and locations; and educate, debate and influence MMA policy positions.
The event is free for MMA members ($25 for non-members). To register, go to the MMA website.