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Fighting Opioid Issue Video

Hear from Dr. Paz on how Aetna’s fighting the issue

Video transcript

Emergency departments are at the front line of the opioid epidemic. Whether treating a patient after an overdose or managing drug-seeking behavior, emergency medicine physicians are uniquely positioned to screen, intervene, and treat substance abuse disorders. Aetna and the Yale New Haven Hospital have joined forces to create this series of educational videos to demonstrate how to incorporate medication-assisted treatment and harm reduction strategies into your clinical practice.

The Yale team has pioneered a meaningful new approach to help those with opioid use disorder obtain treatment in the emergency department. Of course, enrolling a patient with substance abuse disorder into a treatment program is ideal, but sometimes they’re just not ready. In that case, all you can do is try to get them to use more responsibly, for instance, by encouraging them not to combine opioids with sedatives, or by making sure they have naloxone with them. This isn’t a failure. You may be saving that person’s life long enough for them to decide to get the help they need.

But as important as they are, naloxone and buprenorphine and naltrexone alone aren’t going to solve the opioid crisis, which is why Aetna is working on a comprehensive approach that includes promoting multimodal pain treatment, encouraging providers to reduce inappropriate prescribing, and increasing access to medication assisted treatment.

The opioid crisis is complex issue that requires many interlocking solutions, but I hope this video series will empower healthcare professionals to provide the best possible care to this at-risk population. It may not end the opioid epidemic, but it just may help you save the life of the person in front of you.

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