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Friday, April 29, 2011
While the abuse of street drugs is on the decline, the abuse of prescription drugs (especially opioid medications) is rising dramatically. And that’s not just among the young—drug abuse among the baby-boom population increased by more than 50 percent between 2002 and 2008. To help get unused prescription drugs out of circulation, the Drug Enforcement Administration is sponsoring “National Medication Take Back Day” on April 30 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. More than 5,300 police departments and other sites are participating. Last week the White House released a federal plan to curtail the nation’s prescription drug abuse epidemic. For more information on the plan, watch for the May 6 issue of Psychiatric News at http://pn.psychiatryonline.org/content/46/10.toc. The issue also contains an article about physicians’ need to monitor pain control medication more tightly while still prescribing it appropriately.
Thursday, April 28, 2011
APA is asking its members to urge their legislators to sign on to letters written by Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) and Reps. Paul Tonko (D-N.Y.) and John Sullivan (R-Okla.) in support of the parity final rule guidance. In the letters, the congressmen ask the Obama Administration to implement the mental health parity rules in full. Currently in effect is an interim rule, which has many gray areas—including the scope and duration of mental health services that must be offered when a qualified health plan currently offers mental health and substance abuse benefits and the application of the rule to Medicaid managed care organizations and/or their carveouts. The deadline to sign on to these letters is Tuesday, May 3. The letters are posted at http://capwiz.com/psychorg/home. Information on the interim final rule appears in Psychiatric News at http://pn.psychiatryonline.org/content/45/5/1.3.full.
|Credit: AP Photo/Alastair Grant|
Wednesday, April 27, 2011
APA has joined an impressive list of government officials, mental health advocacy groups and experts, scientists, and clinicians to launch former Congressman Patrick Kennedy’s campaign to support the development of effective new treatments for neurological and mental disorders and dramatically increase funding for and coordination of brain research. The American Psychiatric Foundation, APA's charitable and educational arm, has stepped up with a $50,000 grant to support the conference that will launch the campaign, known as “The Next Frontier: One Mind for the Brain.” Read more about this major effort to advance brain research in the May 6 issue of Psychiatric News, accessible on May 6 at http://pn.psychiatryonline.org/content/46/9.toc.
Tuesday, April 26, 2011
|Credit: Adrian Grosu/shutterstock|
Monday, April 25, 2011
The Court’s decision was not considered a surprise because it rarely steps into a legal fight before issues are aired in appellate courts, and at least three hearings are scheduled in appellate courts in May and June. The case still could reach the high court in time for a decision by early summer 2012. More information is available in Psychiatric News at http://pn.psychiatryonline.org/content/46/1/11.1.full.