First lady Melania Trump and HHS Secretary Alex Azar on Wednesday met with families in Philadelphia affected by neonatal abstinence syndrome, a condition that occurs when babies are exposed to opioids in the womb, in today's bite-sized hospital and health industry news from Hawaii, New York, and Pennsylvania.
- Hawaii: State health officials are advising hospitals to prepare for a new state law that will allow patients to seek physician-assisted suicide. The law goes into effect in 2019 and will require two separate health care providers to confirm the patient's diagnosis, prognosis, and their ability to make decisions. Providers will have to confirm that the request is voluntary (AP/Sacramento Bee, 10/18).
- New York: National Indemnity, a subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway, has closed its purchase of New York malpractice insurer MLMIC. Warren Buffett, Berkshire's CEO, said the company is "going to defend the physicians, even if sometimes it makes sense to settle and pay the lawyer's fees and move on" (LaMantia, Modern Healthcare, 10/17).
- Pennsylvania: First lady Melania Trump and HHS Secretary Alex Azar on Wednesday met with families in Philadelphia affected by neonatal abstinence syndrome, a condition that occurs when babies are exposed to opioids in the womb. Trump said she is "proud of the administration's continued efforts in fighting opioid addiction" (Hellmann, The Hill, 10/17).
Your top resources for combatting the opioid epidemic—in one place
The opioid epidemic is a complex, multi-dimensional public health problem. Use this list of helpful resources on how hospitals and health systems can play a role to treat opioid addiction and prevent further increase in opioid abuse.
- New Tool: Medicare Opioid Prescription Assessment
- Infographic: 9 imperatives for hospital and health system executives to confront the opioid epidemic
- Upcoming Webconference: What you need to know to stay on top of the opioid epidemic
- Report: Get 15 best practices to reduce unwarranted opioid prescribing