The Opioid Crisis: Treating Addiction and Saving Lives

Time & Location

9:00 - 10:30 AM ET

An estimated 2.1 million Americans have an opioid use disorder, according to the latest national data. Opioid overdose takes the lives of 4.6 Americans every hour. With a crisis of this magnitude, it is easy to lose sight of the fact that effective, life-saving treatments are out there. Medication-assisted therapy and the opioid-reversing drug naloxone, for example, are two highly effective interventions for addiction and overdose, but access barriers persist.

In part two of our opioid webinar series, we explored ways to expand the use of evidence-based treatment, including:

  • Strategies to smooth access to key drug therapies through standing orders to dispense and removal of prior authorization requirements
  • Federal and private-sector initiatives to protect the patients from sub-standard or fraudulent addiction treatment
  • A multi-sector collaboration to adopt principles of care for substance abuse treatment and to help practitioners stay abreast of the evidence
  • Ideas for using pharmacy data to identify potential abuse and for deploying telehealth technology to improve access to treatment


The Opioid Crisis: Taking Action

Kathryn Power

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

Opioid Addiction and Substance Use Disorder: Anthem's Treatment Strategies to Address the Crisis

Sherry Dubester, MD

Anthem, Inc.

Opioid Addiction and Substance Use Disorder: Anthem's Treatment Strategies to Address the Crisis

Eric Bailly

Anthem, Inc.

The Opioid Crisis: Protecting Members from Fraud, Waste and Abuse

Suzanne Kunis

Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey

Two National Efforts: The IHI Open School Substance Use Campaign & Shatterproof

Donald Berwick, MD

Institute for Healthcare Improvement

Additional Resources
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"Access to Substance Abuse Treatment, Drug Overdoes Deaths, and Crime," EconoFact, Jason M. Lindo, Samuel R. Bondurant and Isaac D. Swensen

Related Resources


Published on: May 12, 2020. Updated on: October 20, 2020.

Sources and Burden of Opioid Deaths Update


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