Opioid Epidemic Will Take Years to Resolve, Experts Warn
The opioid epidemic took almost two decades to develop and it will take years to resolve, experts warn in a new report.
As heroin use escalates across the U.S., addicts and their loved ones who are seeking treatment face a lack of services and strict constraints placed by insurance companies, according to health care and addiction professionals.
Specialists say before insurance companies agree to cover inpatient services they require evidence that the addicted patient has tried one or more outpatient programs. Some insurance companies also demand proof that the individual has little or no outside support network, has already failed at a less expensive treatment facility or has a health condition that makes treatment a medical necessity, the Courier Post Reports.
The demand for treatment is also quickly outpacing the available supply for help, often leaving those who are struggling with a heroin addiction without the services they need to be on a path to recovery.
A study released late last year by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration shows that while use of other drugs like methamphetamine is decreasing, heroin use continues to rise across the nation.