State Medicaid agencies limiting opioid prescriptions

From Modern Healthcare:

State Medicaid agencies around the country are limiting how many opioids providers can prescribe in an effort to curb the disproportionate number of beneficiaries who are at risk of overdose and death.

Medicaid beneficiaries are prescribed painkillers at twice the rate of other patients and are at three to six times the risk of opioid overdose, the CMS reports (PDF).

North Carolina, for example, found that while the Medicaid population represented approximately 20% of the overall state population (PDF), it accounted for one-third of drug overdose deaths, the majority of which were caused by prescription opioids.

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