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Rural Health
News by Topic: Illicit drug use

Public Inspection: HRSA: Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Rural Health Opioid Program Grant Performance Measures Federal Register
Dec 14, 2017 - The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) is requesting public comments regarding their intent to collect information from grantees of the Rural Health Opioid Program, which aims to promote rural healthcare services outreach by expanding opioid-related healthcare services to rural communities. Specifically, HRSA will use the collected information to measure grantee performance and assess the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy's (FORHP) progress toward meeting set goals. Comments regarding the proposed information collection must be submitted within 60 days of final publication in the Federal Register, which is scheduled for December 15, 2017.
Source: Federal Register
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Impact of Childhood Trauma Reaches Rural Wisconsin
Nov 30, 2017 - Focuses on a rural county in Wisconsin where rates of opioid overdoses and hospitalizations are particularly high. This county also has high rates of adverse childhood experiences (ACEs). Addresses the impact both of these things can have on individuals and communities and how they are exacerbated by limited access to healthcare.
Source: journal sentinel
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Opioid Crisis Affects Farmers Harder Than Their Rural Neighbors
Nov 29, 2017 - According to a poll commissioned by the American Farm Bureau Federation and the National Farmers Union, almost 75% of U.S. farmers and farm workers report being directly affected by opioid dependence, while the rural population as a whole only reports approximately 45% being directly affected. Farmers and farm workers also were more likely to report that it is easy to access opioids in their community.
Source: Bloomberg
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Updated Medicare Part D Opioid Drug Mapping Tool Unveiled
Nov 29, 2017 - The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released an updated version of their interactive Medicare opioid prescribing mapping tool. This tool provides geographic comparisons of Medicare Part D opioid prescribing rates and includes county-level hot spots and outliers.
Source: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
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Opioid, Heroin Overdoses Contributing to Rural Population Decline, USDA Says
Nov 17, 2017 - In its annual survey of rural America, Rural America at a Glance the U.S. Department of Agriculture found that population rates are decreasing in rural areas and that mortality rates of working-age adults are increasing, in part because of opioid overdoses.
Source: KUNC
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Scale of Opioid Epidemic in Texas Likely Obscured by Bad Data, Experts Say
Nov 17, 2017 - Because Texas state law only requires counties with a population greater than 1 million to have medical professionals sign death certificates, there is speculation that this has led to under-reporting of opioid overdose deaths. Only 15 of 254 Texas counties have medical examiners who determine if a body needs an autopsy. Other counties rely on non-medically trained justices of the peace to make that determination. Although Texas does not rank particularly highly among other states for opioid overdoses, it has four of the top five cities with the highest prescription painkiller abuse and ranks second in the country for healthcare costs associated with opioid abuse.
Source: The Daily Texan
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CMS Proposes Policies to Lower the Cost of Prescription Drugs and Combat the Opioid Crisis
Nov 16, 2017 - The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) have issued a proposed rule intended to provide more affordable prescription drugs to Medicare Part D enrollees and to allow Medicare to combat overprescribing and abuse of opioid medications. A fact sheet on this proposed rule is available.
Source: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
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USDA Helps Rural Communities Thrive With Health, Safety Outreach
Nov 13, 2017 - The U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) announced that it would be supporting health education projects for individuals and families in rural areas through the Rural Health and Safety Education Competitive Grant Program. These grants were awarded to extension agents and land-grant universities in nine states with a focus on prevention and reduction of opioid abuse and chronic disease prevention and management.
Source: United States Department of Agriculture, National Institute of Food and Agriculture
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How The Opioid Crisis Is Affecting Native Americans
Nov 11, 2017 - Radio interview with Dr. Ron Shaw, president of the Association of American Indian Physicians, about the impact of the opioid epidemic on Native American populations. Native Americans have the highest death rate from opioid overdoses of any demographic. Discussion includes the impact of historical trauma and the necessity of medication-assisted treatment.
Source: NPR
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It’s Not Just Heroin Killing Alaskans: Meth Deaths Here Are up Four-Fold
Nov 7, 2017 - Details the continued presence and increased prevalence of methamphetamine use in Alaska. There were 233 deaths related to methamphetamine use in the state from 2008 to 2016; the average from 2014-2016 was four times higher than the average from 2008-2010.
Source: Alaska Dispatch News
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