In medical news:

The CDC issued its final guidelines for the prescription of opioids yesterday, a long anticipated step that could help curb abuse of painkillers and educate doctors about best practices in the midst of America’s worst drug epidemic in recent memory. According to the New York Times, the release of the new guidelines ends months of arguments with pain management doctors and pharmacy industry groups, which had bitterly opposed the recommendations on the grounds that they would create unfair hurdles for patients who legitimately have long-term chronic pain. The guidelines suggest starting patients with NSAID pain relievers before considering opioids, and then providing only about a three day supply, rather than the typical one week or month-long supply. The recommendations are geared toward primary care doctors, who prescribe more opioids than any other physician group, but who often lack adequate education about the drugs’ addictive potential.

Read the guidelines here. Read further coverage from the New York Times here.

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