What We're Reading: Opioid Disposal; KY Medicaid Program; Drug Price Gouging

Wal-Mart is providing customers with a way to safely dispose of unused opioids; Kentucky's governor signs a bill to protect his Medicaid overhaul; Maryland coalition aims to ban price gouging for specialty and brand-name drugs.

Wal-Mart Will Provide a Way to Dispose of Opioids

Customers who fill opioid prescriptions at Wal-Mart will also receive a way to dispose of the drugs that prevent them from being misused. According to Reuters, customers will be given a packet of powder that they can mix with water and add to their pill bottle to dispose of unused opioids. The power and water mixture creates a biodegradable gel around the pills.

Kentucky Governor Seeks to Protect Medicaid Overhaul

If a court were to strike down Kentucky’s overhaul of Medicaid, which requires able-bodied beneficiaries to work, then Governor Matt Bevin would strip half a million people of their coverage. The executive order Bevin signed would mostly affect adults added to the program after it was expanded under former Governor Steve Beshear, a Democrat, reported Courier Journal. So far, no legal challenge has been brought against Bevin’s overhaul of Medicaid, but several advocacy groups said it likely will be since some changes violate the federal law that establishes Medicaid.

Coalition Pushes Ban on Drug Price Gouging

The Maryland Health Care for All! Coalition is aiming to protect certain brand-name drugs from price gouging. AP reported that the coalition is trying to build on the success of a law in 2017 that was the first to prohibit price gouging of generic and off-patent drugs. Some of the drugs being targeted include those for multiple sclerosis, HIV/AIDS, and hepatitis C.