Value-based care solutions and patient software have changed the face of healthcare and improved it. But, the opioid overdose problem has stunted the progress of healthcare. Every 12.4 minutes, someone dies due to opioid overdose.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 42,249 people in the country died from opioid overdoses in 2016. The National Institute on Drug Abuse says that Ohio’s 2016 rate of 32.9 opioid-related overdose death per 100,000 were ranked third after West Virginia and New Hampshire. As per NIDA, its more than triple the state’s 2010 rate, which was 10 overdose deaths per 100,000.
There have been debates about the root cause of the epidemic; pill mills, misinformation, drug cartels, etc. But, the focus should be on the solutions. An opioid cannot be completely eliminated as its still a valid option for many patients. But, prescribers and patients should be better informed and more responsible.
In Ohio, five competing hospital systems have collaborated on the Northeast Ohio Hospital Opioid Consortium. The mission is to reduce the impact of the opioid epidemic in the region by sharing and implementing evidence-based practices. It is promoting policy changes and increasing prevention efforts.