Sen. Cardin hosts se­cond opi­oid dis­cus­sion

Times-Record - - News - By MIKE DAVIS mdavis@kibay­

AN­NAPO­LIS — Two years ago, U.S. Sen. Ben Cardin helped or­ga­nize a round­table dis­cus­sion re­gard­ing the grow­ing opi­oid epi­demic seen in Mary­land and through­out the United States, bring­ing health care pro­fes­sion­als, law en­force­ment and non­profit or­ga­ni­za­tions to­gether to share ideas on what has and has not worked in putting a dent in the cri­sis.

On Mon­day, March 19, those same pro­fes­sion­als gath­ered again at Anne Arundel Med­i­cal Center for the same dis­cus­sion as the opi­oid epi­demic con­tin­ues to surge. Dur­ing the 90-minute long meet­ing, pro­fes­sion­als shared ideas and meth­ods, as well as in­dus­try and pro­gram short­com­ings.

The dis­cus­sion is part of Cardin’s on­go­ing se­ries of con­ver­sa­tions re­gard­ing the mis­use and abuse of pre­scrip­tion and il­licit opi­oids.

Vic­to­ria Bay­less, pres­i­dent and CEO of Anne Arundel Med­i­cal Center, said since the care provider an­nounced its goal of re­duc­ing opi­oid pre­scrib­ing through­out its health sys­tem and the med­i­cal com­mu­nity by 50 per­cent by 2019, num­bers at the end of year one show a 59 per­cent re­duc­tion. Bay­less said that is equiv­a­lent to 138,000 fewer pills in com­mu­ni­ties ev­ery month.

She cred­its its suc­cess on the hun­dreds of physi­cians who al­tered their pre­scrib­ing pat­terns.

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