Deborah Agus: Opioid crisis continues unabated in Md. and elsewhere; here's a plan of action

Despite millions in federal funding to combat the opioid crisis and task forces developed to study it at both the state and city level here, not much has changed. The crisis continues unabated here, and overdose deaths soar. Why? Some of the expanded services incorporate treatment philosophies that create barriers to long-term medication assisted treatment, when evidence shows that restricting access to maintenance medication increases overdose deaths. Additionally, current Medicaid rules for reimbursement are inadequate to support the costs of a robust medication assisted treatment (MAT) program. Funding is not based on clinical disease treatment models, and there is no compensation for nurses — the backbone of opioid clinics. (Balt. Sun)

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