Lifesaving Opioid Overdose Antidote Drug, Naloxone, Continues Upward Pricing Spiral

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Oregon hospitals join ranks contributing to naloxone price hikes while lawmakers scrutinize drug company no-holds-barred pricing strategies. Nearly 60 percent of Oregon’s hospitals have recently increased prices of naloxone – an opioid overdose antidote drug – by more than 10 percent. Five of these hospitals hiked the price of the drug ranging from 100 to 300 percent in 2014 compared to the previous year.

A lifesaving opioid overdose antidote used effectively for substance abuse - Naloxone Hydrochloride - has skyrocketed in the past couple years, worrying state health advocates across the U.S. with Oregon among them.

HERC Revises Guideline for Weaning Off Opioids with More Comprehensive Plan

Last year, the Health Evidence Review Commission tasked coordinated care organizations to get Medicaid patients off long-term narcotic therapies for pain by the end of 2016. The deadline’s been changed, calling for CCOs to put a treatment plan in place by the end of this year and wean them off the addictive drugs by the end of next year.

The Health Evidence Review Commission has revised its guidelines for weaning patients off the long-term use of narcotics to treat back pain on the Oregon Health Plan, delaying the stop-date by a year but requiring a more comprehensive treatment plan for pain management without the use of opiates.

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