Government Legislation in Response to the Opioid Epidemic
Purpose of Review
Opioid misuse and abuse in the USA has evolved into an epidemic of tragic pain and suffering, resulting in the estimated death of over 64,000 people in 2016. Governmental regulation has escalated alongside growing awareness of the epidemic’s severity, both on the state and federal levels.
This article reviews the timeline of government interventions from the late 1990s to today, including the declaration of the opioid crisis as a national public health emergency and the resultant changes in funding and policy across myriad agencies. Aspects of the cultural climate that fuel the epidemic, and foundational change that may promote sustained success against it, are detailed within as well.
As a consequence of misuse and abuse of opioids, governmental regulation has attempted to safeguard society, and clinicians should appreciate changes and expectations of prescribers.
KeywordsOpioid epidemic Addiction Overdose Prescription drug monitoring program Commission on combating drug addiction Opioid crisis Abuse-deterrent formulations
Compliance with Ethics Standard
Conflict of Interest
Mark R. Jones, Matthew B. Novitch, Syena Sarrafpour, Ken P. Ehrhardt, Benjamin B. Scott, Vwaire Orhurhu, Omar Viswanath, Alan D. Kaye, Jatinder Gill, and Thomas T. Simopoulos declare no conflict of interest. Dr. Kaye is a speaker for Depomed, Inc. and Merck, Inc.
Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent
This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.
Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as:•• Of major importance
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