In the News: The Bridge, Federal Opioid Bill and Synthetic Marijuana

In this week’s podcast, we turn to things in the news. “The Bridge” is a new device to help manage symptoms of withdrawal; the Federal Opioid Bill was passed; and synthetic marijuana sent 33 people to the hospital. Let’s check in with the opiate addicts themselves to get their opinion on these topics.

Discussion Guide:

The Bridge is designed to reduce the pain of withdrawal for a 4-5 day period.

What do you think the advantages and disadvantages of The Bridge are?

What’s the best use of The Bridge?

Do you think it could’ve helped you detox from opiates?

The Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act was passed this week to address the high number of deaths from opiate overdoses. It expands access to Buprenorphine, expands access to the opiate overdose reversal drug, expands access to prescription drug monitoring program, and expands prevention and education. However, the bill does not create new funding for these purposes.

Have you benefitted from Buprenorphine treatment? Do you think this will adequately address the range of opiate treatment?

Have you, or your contacts, benefitted from Naloxone, a.k.a. Narcan?

Have you been stopped from doctor shopping due to the prescription drug monitoring program?

In your opinion, what type of education would you recommend to decrease or prevent drug use among students or others?

Synthetic Marijuana aka K2, Spice

Have you used synthetic marijuana?

Do you know what it’s made from?

Did you suffer bad effects from it?

It was written that “emergency visits were mostly by males, with a median age of 37, who are disproportionately residents of shelters and individuals with a psychiatric illness.” Why do you think this is?

Supplemental Reading:

Danielle Lama, New Device Aims to Help Heroin Addicts Get Through Withdrawal http://www.wdrb.com/story/32329836/new-device-aims-to-help-heroin-addicts-get-through-withdrawal

Amanda Holpuch, More Than 30 People Fall Ill in Apparent Mass Drug Overdose in New York https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/jul/13/more-than-30-people-fall-ill-in-apparent-mass-drug-overdose-in-new-york

Nicholas Rondinone, Five Things To Know About Recently Passed Federal Opioid Bill http://www.courant.com/health/heroin/hc-five-things-cara-passage-0714-20160714-story.html