OHA Considers Opioids and Alternatives

The Oregon Health Authority could expand Medicaid coverage for opioids by 2020. The increased access would be for conditions, like fibromyalgia, chronic pain syndrome, and trauma.

Along with opiates, OHA will also consider alternative treatments.

OHA announced Friday that the matter is subject of a third-party review by the Health Evidence Review Commission. The Chief Medical Officer for OHA, Dr. Dana Hargunani, says funding under the Oregon Health Plan could cover pain treatments such as massage, acupuncture and pharmaceuticals, including opiates

“And if there is strong evidence for effectiveness of treatments in those conditions, have a big impact on the populations,” says Dr. Hargunani, “they get prioritized high on the list and ultimately the Legislature then funds those conditions.”

If approved by the Commission, the proposals would go into effect next year.