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-   -   Can actuaries help solve the opioid crisis? (http://www.actuarialoutpost.com/actuarial_discussion_forum/showthread.php?t=323884)

Locrian 08-24-2017 03:54 PM

That's awful. And there's been a LOT of it over the last few years. I remember personally finding clinics in several midwestern states + georgia all bilking insurance companies. They weren't even that sneaky about it.

Size17 09-11-2017 11:16 AM

Is anyone familiar with how the Academy approaches its public policy communications?

http://www.actuary.org/category/site...-policy/health

Perhaps this is a good avenue to put an actuarial perspective out in the world. probably costs to healthcare system seems the most appropriate angle, but I wonder if there are other datapoints related to prevalence and effectiveness of opiods as well.

FormLetter 09-18-2017 03:51 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bigb (Post 9049355)
How exactly is it that "actuaries" can solve an opioid crisis? How many other crisis' exist in the health sector that "actuaries" have been exposed to now for decades? Clinician's seem to be in an infinitely better position to address this issue. Its like asking us why doctors are writing scripts.

It's not just doctors writings prescriptions.

Oftentimes there are leaks from manufacturers where massive amounts of pills are stolen at a time. Some employee figures out an opportunity point in the manufacturing/inventory process and manages to sneak out a garbage bag full of the huge pill bottles that are in the locked cabinets behind the counter at retail pharmacies.

FormLetter 09-18-2017 03:54 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by WhosOnFirst (Post 9049504)
I think the OP was trying to show that the risk prediction methodologies that actuaries are very familiar with could help with opioid addiction. I inferred that that he believes that being able to predict who might get addicted in the first place could be of use to prevent future addiction. That would appear to be a realm where actuaries are better suite then clinicians.

I'm not positive I buy into the idea of being able to reduce addiction by predicting who might become an addict. My bias is towards viewing addiction as a medical condition which means my preference for solving any addiction would be through a better understanding of the biological processes that create addiction. I don't think actuaries are of much use in that realm.

Well if you can use risk factors to predict who is likely to become an addict, AND drugs like Vivitrol became far far cheaper, then those people could be given Vivitrol as a preventative measure. Seems overkill though, most likely.

FormLetter 09-18-2017 04:00 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Patriot (Post 9072265)
When I had a kidney stone blasted I was given a 90 day (@ 6 pills per day) script for vicodin. Someone told me the street value for 540 vicodin tablets was several K.

Depending on the dosage, yes, that street value for that would be somewhere around $2500-$5000.

I think they waaaaaay over-prescribed in that case.

Patriot 09-21-2017 11:21 AM

Ask An Actuary!

Random Walk 09-22-2017 04:15 PM

Well, some folks are starting to say insurance companies' policies on painkillers are making the opioid crisis worse:
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/09/17/h...companies.html

Quote:

ProPublica and The New York Times analyzed Medicare prescription drug plans covering 35.7 million people in the second quarter of this year. Only one-third of the people covered, for example, had any access to Butrans, a painkilling skin patch that contains a less-risky opioid, buprenorphine. And every drug plan that covered lidocaine patches, which are not addictive but cost more than other generic pain drugs, required that patients get prior approval for them.

In contrast, almost every plan covered common opioids and very few required any prior approval.

The insurers have also erected more hurdles to approving addiction treatments than for the addictive substances themselves, the analysis found.

dgtatum 10-15-2017 07:05 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by WhosOnFirst (Post 9049504)
I think the OP was trying to show that the risk prediction methodologies that actuaries are very familiar with could help with opioid addiction. I inferred that that he believes that being able to predict who might get addicted in the first place could be of use to prevent future addiction. That would appear to be a realm where actuaries are better suite then clinicians.

I'm not positive I buy into the idea of being able to reduce addiction by predicting who might become an addict. My bias is towards viewing addiction as a medical condition which means my preference for solving any addiction would be through a better understanding of the biological processes that create addiction. I don't think actuaries are of much use in that realm.

There is a long history in the medical profession of using anecdotal evidence and stories to come up with treatment plans and actions. I think Actuaries absolutely have a role in helping people see through empirical data what works and what doesn't. Let the medical professionals come up with the treatment, let us show them the results.

LICENSED TO ILL 04-19-2018 01:10 PM

March Time Magazine did an entire issue for Opioid. I read it today while giving blood. Very sad.

Dr T Non-Fan 04-19-2018 01:30 PM

Some hockey announcer lost his kid to this, but not before getting milled in Florida.

http://www.espn.com/espn/otl/story/_...nce-fraud-espn

Only a matter of time before a critical mass of people have been negatively affected by this.


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