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Proposition for Stricter Policies on Opioid Medication
Institutional Affiliation



Proposition for Stricter Policies on Opioid Medication
The amount of suffering that people with severe or chronic pain experience is the main
reason why opioid medication is necessary. Although this is a legitimate need, there is a growing
problem of addiction among individuals that use the medication. The number of American dying
from opioid overdose has also increased significantly. It is increasingly becoming an epidemic
considering that in 2015 about 30,000 deaths were attributed to opioid (University of Georgia,
2017). There is need for change in policies that control such medication. Policies on opioid
medication need to be stricter about the approval and prescription process, as well as labelling of
the medication.
Projected Outcomes, Consequences and Benefits of Policy Change
The outcome of stricter policies on opioid medication would be both beneficial and
detrimental to the various parties. It would affect the medical community, the general public and
the pharmaceutical companies.
The medical Community
When there is improved labeling of the medication, there will be better communication
with the medical community. With improved safety labelling, doctors will have clearer
information on the risks of the drugs and how well to prescribe them. Doctors are the primary
agents through whom the drug reaches users (Dick et al., 2015). Cautious prescription guided by
better understanding of their effect will be beneficial as there will be less cases of opioid
addiction. Besides the labeling improvement, more prescribers will be subjected to pain
management training that will enable them provide safe opioid prescription. Reducing incidences
of inappropriate prescription of opioid is a critical component in the fight against opioid



The general public
Opioid medication has largely been blamed for public health crisis of heroin addiction. It
is the addiction that leads to more cases of overdose. The policy change recommends
employment of drugs that counter the opioid overdose problem. There are generic drugs that can
deter abuse of opioid medication. Availability of drugs with such addiction-deterrent formulation
would be a major step towards lowering the cases of overdose in the general public. When
medications such as the Naloxone are made more available to the public, it would help in
lowering the cases of opioid overdose (FDA, 2016).
Pharmaceutical Companies
The policy change will require pharmaceutical companies to be proactive about the users
of the drugs they manufacture. They will be required to provide more information about the
effect of opioid use. Presently, there is scarcely any information on the effect of continued use of
the medication (FDA, 2016). The pharmaceuticals will be required to conduct studies on the
risks association with continued use, abuse, and misuse of opioid. Pharmaceutical will also need
to provide information on indicators of issues such as addiction. On overall, the policy change
will require more accountability and responsibility from the pharmacy company.
Current Events
There are current events relating to opioid treatments that show government efforts
towards the same direction as the proposed policy change. The government is expanding access
to treatment to the opioid addiction. There are considerations to deregulate doctors on using
drugs such as methadone and buprenorphine. These are used to tame craving for opioid drugs.
There are also calls for development of vaccines that would prevent addiction. The government
is also calling for development of...

Cornell University

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