Opioids

COVID-19 Eased Drug Treatment Rules—And That Saved Lives

A deadly year could have been much worse without phone counseling options.

Nation Sees Troubling Rise in Fatal Cocaine Overdoses

Many of the deaths involve cocaine mixed with the opioid fentanyl, a new analysis finds. Data shows that 2019 may have been a record year for deadly overdoses.

Patients Struggle to Find Prescription Opioids After New York Tax Drives Out Suppliers

The tax was touted as a way to punish major drugmakers for their role in the opioid epidemic and generate funding for treatment programs. But to avoid paying, scores of manufacturers and wholesalers stopped selling opioids in New York.

Purdue Pharma’s Plea Deal Won’t Solve America’s Drug Problem

COMMENTARY | Billion-dollar fines will never mend the myriad social issues underlying Americans’ voracious appetite for pain relief.

OxyContin Manufacturer Pleads Guilty to Criminal Charges in Opioid Lawsuit

STATE AND LOCAL ROUNDUP | Iowa misspent $21 million in coronavirus relief funds, audit finds ... California city will launch a pilot program to guarantee income for some residents ... Georgia voters may not know who funded campaigns before casting ballots.

A State Project to Map Overdoses in Real Time

A statewide project in Connecticut takes reports of suspected opioid overdoses from first responders and maps them in real time, helping community partners better direct their services to high-risk areas.

Health on Wheels: Tricked-Out RVs Deliver Addiction Treatment to Rural Communities

As in many states, access to addiction treatment remains a challenge in Colorado.

New York Tax On Opioid Drug Makers Revived By Federal Appeals Court

A ruling by the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals overturns a lower court decision that axed a state tax that would require drug companies to pay hundreds of millions to help cover the cost of the state’s response to the opioid epidemic.

States Claim Drugmaker Owes $2 Trillion for Role in Opioid Epidemic

Forty-nine states and the District of Columbia say that OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma contributed to a crisis that has claimed hundreds of thousands of lives.

Opioid Overdoses Keep Surging in Chicago, Killing Black People on the West Side

Half of Cook County’s confirmed opioid-related deaths have been among Black residents, even though they make up less than a quarter of the county’s population. Officials warn that the coronavirus pandemic has overshadowed the crisis.

Texas AG Brokers Deal With Counties on Opioid Payouts

The deal would send 15% of any national settlement deal directly to cities and counties.

Want to Test More People for Covid-19? Look At the Sewage

COMMENTARY | Wastewater surveillance can help communities increase their testing capabilities and better manage and monitor the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Opioid Epidemic Might Be Much Worse Than We Thought

A new paper suggests that death certificates dramatically undercounted the number of people dying from opioid overdoses.

This State Has Figured Out How to Treat Drug-Addicted Inmates

More jails and prisons are starting to offer medication-assisted treatment for inmates addicted to opioids. But it's available at just a very small fraction of correctional facilities across the country.

Federal Opioid Grants Can Be Used for Cocaine and Meth Addiction

State drug treatment agencies can now use an opioid grant program to treat people with addictions to cocaine and methamphetamine.

State Health Officials Say Medicaid Expansion Helped Combat Opioid Epidemic

Health officials from Rhode Island, Massachusetts, North Carolina, West Virginia, and Pennsylvania testified before a congressional committee about how states have used federal opioid funding.

For Rural Drug Users, Finding Clean Needles Might Mean Looking in the Mail

In places where needle exchanges are scarce or even illegal, one online, mail-based needle exchange is trying to get people safe injection supplies and overdose reversal materials.

For Appalachian Counties, Jobs are Key for Opioid Recovery

Leaders from Appalachian counties shared their experiences battling the opioid epidemic, and pointed to economic opportunities for residents as an important part of the recovery effort.

Legalizing Marijuana Could Help Fight the Opioid Epidemic, New Research Says

New research found opioids were prescribed less often in states where marijuana has been legalized for medicinal or recreational use.

Why Opioids Are ‘An Everything Problem’

New research supports the idea that economic distress sparked the opioid epidemic. But others say the true causes are far more complicated.