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Internists say President’s Opioid Abuse Commission is a Step Toward Effective Treatment

March 30, 2017

Attributable to:
Nitin S. Damle, MD, MS, MACP

President, American College of Physicians

The American College of Physicians (ACP) is encouraged that President Trump and his administration are taking a step toward identifying the most effective ways to address the opioid epidemic with the creation of a new commission devoted to opioid abuse.  ACP urges the commission to consider the recommendations made in our new policy paper, Health and Public Policy to Facilitate Effective Prevention and Treatment of Substance Use Disorders Involving Illicit and Prescription Drugs, just published in Annals of Internal Medicine.  We also urge the administration to consult with the AMA Opioid Task Force, of which ACP is a member.

Substance use disorders are treatable chronic medical conditions, like diabetes and hypertension, that should be addressed through expansion of evidence-based public and individual health initiatives to prevent, treat, and promote recovery, rather than excessive reliance on criminalization and incarceration.  We know that by expanding access to naloxone, improving prescription drug monitoring systems, and supporting coverage of opioid use disorder treatment through Medicaid and private insurance, we can stop this epidemic and save lives.

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The American College of Physicians is the largest medical specialty organization in the United States. ACP members include 148,000 internal medicine physicians (internists), related subspecialists, and medical students. Internal medicine physicians are specialists who apply scientific knowledge and clinical expertise to the diagnosis, treatment, and compassionate care of adults across the spectrum from health to complex illness. Follow ACP on Twitter and Facebook.

Contact: Jackie Blaser, (202) 261-4572,