President Biden Reverses Trump Admin Opioid Treatment Plan
In his first few weeks as President, Joe Biden has chosen to reverse course on many plans that were put into motion during the Trump administration, the latest of which includes canceling Trump’s less restrictive policies related to the Opioid epidemic. The plan from the Trump administration received a positive response from many physicians and medical professionals, and they claimed that the policy would make fighting and responding to the opioid crisis a much faster endeavor.
What Was the Trump Opioid Policy?
The Trump administration opioid treatment plan allowed practitioners to prescribe Buprenorphine (an opioid treatment drug) without an “X-waiver.” The “X-waiver” is a federal license that permits clinicians to prescribe buprenorphine for opioid addiction treatment. The reason many doctors were in favor of the Trump policy is that they feel the X-waiver is an outdated constraint that is making it harder for physicians to help opioid addicts that are trying to get on the road to recovery.
Buprenorphine was approved by the FDA as a treatment option for opioid addiction in 2002, but only a few doctors possess the federal waiver that allows them to prescribe it to patients, and even fewer still actually use it. The medication satiates Opioid cravings and decreases drug use, and studies have shown that it is a very effective tool at reducing opioid related deaths. Advocates hope that by lifting the “X-waiver” restriction they can greatly speed up the fight against opioids in the US.
Does Biden Have Plans for Opioid Treatment Reform?
While President Biden recognized the need for action surrounding the opioid epidemic, his administration feels as though lifting the current regulation could lead to different problems. He has even stated that he believes the restrictions on Buprenorphine are outdated, so we will see how they tackle this issue in the future.