Medicaid Patients Who Overdosed on Opioid or Heroin Were Prescribed More Opioids at High Rates


Medicaid patients in Pennsylvania who experienced an opioid or heroin overdose were prescribed more opioids at high rates, according to a study from the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health.

The study evaluated Medicaid claims in Pennsylvania from 2008 through 2013 for those individuals ages 12 to 64 who had experienced a prescription opioid or heroin overdose. There were 6,013 cases found—3,945 were individuals who overdosed on prescription opioids and 2,068 overdosed on heroin.

According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, individuals on Medicaid are three times more likely to have a risk of opioid overdose than those who are privately insured.


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