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Dr Jeff White: Collaboration Is Key to Combatting Opioid Epidemic

Jeff White, PharmD, MS, staff vice president, Anthem, discusses what role Anthem has in addressing the opioid epidemic, as well as how important collaboration with other stakeholders is for addressing the epidemic.


Jeff White, PharmD, MS, staff vice president, Anthem, discusses what role Anthem has in addressing the opioid epidemic, as well as how important collaboration with other stakeholders is for addressing the epidemic.

Transcript

As a payer, what role do you have in addressing the opioid epidemic?


Anthem has taken a national leadership role in addressing the opioid abuse epidemic. We set out a goal of reducing opioid use by 30% by 2019 from its peak in 2012. We’ve achieved that goal 2 years early. In fact, we’ve achieved over a 40% reduction in opioid use since the peak in 2012. So, Anthem has an important role in helping to address the opioid abuse epidemic.

How important is it to collaborate with other stakeholders in order to ensure success with these different initiatives?

This epidemic is so large and vast and complicated, it’s going to take effort from a number of different stakeholders to help address this epidemic. For example, the government, regulatory agencies, health plans such as Anthem, PBMs [pharmacy benefit managers], physicians, educating patients, are all necessary to help address the opioid abuse epidemic.

 
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