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Florida ‘Pill Mill’ Crackdown May Have Curbed Painkiller ODs

MONDAY, Dec. 21, 2015 (HealthDay News) — A crackdown on “pill mills” in Florida appears to have led to fewer overdose deaths from analgesic painkillers, and competence have helped revoke heroin overdose deaths as well, researchers report.

Pill mills are clinics run by doctors who purportedly write vast numbers of prescriptions for analgesic painkillers for cash, mostly though examining a patient, a researchers said. These painkillers embody Oxycontin, Percocet and Vicodin.

After Florida officials began their crackdown on tablet mills, some-more than 1,000 fewer deaths occurred over 34 months, a investigate revealed.

“Curbing a operation of tablet mills competence be an effective approach for states to revoke medication analgesic overdose genocide rates and sum analgesic overdose genocide rates,” pronounced lead researcher Alene Kennedy-Hendricks, an partner scientist during Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore.

Deaths from analgesic painkillers and heroin have reached widespread proportions, and tablet mills are a vital source of a problem, she said.

Findings from a investigate were published Dec. 21 in a American Journal of Public Health. Although a investigate found a couple between a new, worse laws and a rebate in overdose deaths, it didn’t infer a decisive cause-and-effect relationship.

The investigate authors pronounced that 90 out of 100 doctors who purchased a many oxycodone in a United States were from Florida in 2010. Meanwhile, another investigate — this one from a Dec. 14 JAMA Internal Medicine — found that primary caring physicians are by distant a biggest prescribers of analgesic painkillers.

Deaths from drug overdoses recently strike a new high, a Dec. 18 news from a U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said. Last year, some-more than 47,000 Americans died from drug overdoses. More than 6 out of 10 overdose deaths endangered narcotics, including medication painkillers and heroin, a CDC investigate showed.

In 2010 and 2011, Florida upheld laws giving a state slip over pain clinics. They also limited a prescribing of analgesic painkillers. At a same time, drug coercion programs resulted in a detain and charge of doctors handling these clinics, a researchers said.

Overdose deaths aren’t usually from analgesic painkillers, Kennedy-Hendricks said. They also engage deaths from heroin. But as deaths from painkiller overdoses declined, deaths from heroin also went down, she said.

Some people are endangered that interventions to stop a non-medical use of medication narcotics competence furnish unintended consequences, she added. For example, people dependant to analgesic painkillers competence switch to heroin if their supply of medication narcotics becomes limited or too expensive, she said.

“However, we found that a state actions were compared with many reduce sum analgesic overdose genocide rates than we would have approaching had Florida not implemented these interventions. It is probable that these actions targeting tablet mills prevented new medication analgesic addictions from developing, so shortening a risk of heroin use,” Kennedy-Hendricks said.

Closing tablet mills competence be a good strategy, not usually for shortening deaths from painkiller overdoses, though also shortening deaths from heroin, she said.

“States with high medication analgesic overdose genocide rates should cruise a border to that tablet mills are handling within their state,” Kennedy-Hendricks said.

The investigate compared Florida overdose trends to those in North Carolina. The researchers looked during a trends before and after tablet indent laws were enacted in Florida. North Carolina has had identical trends in medication painkiller overdose deaths, a researchers noted.

There were scarcely 12,000 deaths in Florida and some-more than 3,700 deaths in North Carolina from analgesic painkillers or heroin between 2003 and 2012, a researchers said.

Over a scarcely 3 years enclosed in a study, an estimated 1,029 lives were saved in Florida, a investigators found. Moreover, a series of lives saved grew any year as new measures were taken to tighten tablet mills, a researchers said.

From Mar until Dec 2010, a genocide rate from medication painkiller overdoses in Florida was 7 percent reduce than expected. In 2011, a rate was 20 percent reduce and in 2012, 34.5 percent lower, a investigate found.

Deaths from heroin overdoses rose in both Florida and North Carolina starting in 2011. But, Florida’s rate was reduce than had been anticipated, a researchers explained.

Dr. Scott Krakower, a partner section arch of psychoanalysis during Zucker Hillside Hospital in Glen Oaks, N.Y., called enormous down on tablet mills a step in a right direction.

“Other states should follow identical surety strategies to assistance stop tablet mills,” he said.

Krakower also suggested larger entrance to naloxone, a drug that can retreat a effects of an overdose.

He combined that resources to provide analgesic obsession are still lacking, generally among a many exposed — college students and immature adults.

More information

For some-more about overdose deaths, revisit a U.S. National Institute on Drug Abuse.

SOURCES: Alene Kennedy-Hendricks, Ph.D., partner scientist, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore; Scott Krakower, D.O., partner section chief, psychiatry, Zucker Hillside Hospital, Glen Oaks, N.Y.; Dec. 21, 2015, American Journal of Public Health

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