Effective treatments for opioid use disorder are underutilized

A National Institutes of Health-funded study found that treatment of opioid use disorder with either methadone or buprenorphine following a nonfatal opioid overdose is associated with significant reductions in opioid related mortality. The research, published today in the Annals of Internal Medicine, was co-funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) and the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences, both parts of NIH.

Study authors analyzed data from 17,568 adults in Massachusetts who survived an opioid overdose between 2012 and 2014. Compared to those not receiving medication assisted treatment, opioid overdose deaths decreased by 59 percent for those receiving methadone and 38 percent for those receiving buprenorphine over the 12 month follow-up period. The authors were unable to draw conclusions about the impact of naltrexone due to small sample size, noting that further work is needed with larger samples. Buprenorphine, methadone, and naltrexone are three FDA-approved medications used to treat opioid use disorder (OUD).

The Public’s Health: Six-tier strategy targets substance abuse

KAREN SULLIVAN for The Montana Standard

Substance abuse is the No. 1 health issue in Butte-Silver Bow, and collaborators in the community are working to develop a plan to address the problem.

Substance abuse in the state as a whole is a reigning health issue, ranking among the top concerns in most Montana communities.

Locally, a substance abuse task force, created last year by Butte-Silver Bow Chief Executive Dave Palmer, is at work to develop local strategies to address substance abuse and substance use disorders. The task force is ably facilitated by local therapist Laura Cross, president of Butte Cares, an organization that focuses on substance abuse prevention.

Statewide, a strategic plan has been developed to address substance use disorders. The plan will define statewide strategies through 2019.

Rally sparks support for tobacco tax on ballot

HELENA – A rally was held Thursday to spark support for a ballot initiative that would increase the cost of a pack of cigarettes by $2 and add fees to other tobacco products to be used for Medicaid expansion and other health programs. Kristin Page-Nei, American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network Montana Government Relations director, said a “major ground game” …

Report: Medicaid expansion pays for itself

Report: Medicaid expansion pays for itself; future economic impact seen as bright HOLLY K. MICHELS holly.michels@lee.net Apr 10, 2018 In the first two years after Montana expanded Medicaid, the savings to the state have eclipsed the costs. Though that could flip by 2020, increased activity in Montana’s economy because of the expansion will more than make up the difference. That’s …

Montana’s income inequality is growing faster

By HOLLY K. MICHELS holly.michels@lee.net Montana is the state with the fastest growth of income inequality, according to a recent report based on U.S. Census Bureau data. The report, from a website called Zippia that covers career issues, summarizes data from the American Community Survey from 2010-2016. Montana’s income inequality increased 4.97 percent over those six years. The state ranks …

Billings Gazette Reports on Yellowstone County’s Top Health Issues

The Billings Gazette reported on February 6, 2017 that the “overall health and mental health of Yellowstone County residents is worse than it was a dozen years ago, even though they have access to more treatment and are seeking it out, a recent report shows.” View the entire Billings Gazette Article

Sapphire Community Health Center Opens

Sapphire Community Health Center Opens: http://ravallirepublic.com/news/local/article_ba4eec1c-90ad-11e5-9e5b-47a8aae652ea.html CEO Janet Woodburn quoted.

Montana Health Justice Partnership Forms after grant from Montana Healthcare Foundation

A Community Health Center – or CHC – is a not-for-profit, consumer-directed health care organization that provides access to high quality, affordable, and comprehensive primary and preventive medical, dental, and mental healthcare. Community Health Centers have a unique mission of ensuring access for underserved, underinsured and uninsured people. Since 1965, Community Health Centers have delivered comprehensive health and social support …