opioids opioids

The HHS inspector general found that some 22,000 Medicare Part D beneficiaries seem to be doctor shopping for opioids — obtaining large amounts prescribed by four or more doctors and filled at four or more pharmacies. Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images

In a new report, the CDC says U.S. doctors are prescribing fewer opioids than they were in 2010, but that overall rates remain high. Donald Gruener/iStockphoto/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Donald Gruener/iStockphoto/Getty Images

Opioid Prescriptions Falling But Remain Too High, CDC Says

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/535656477/535823197" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript
Maria Fabrizio for NPR

Without Medical Support, DIY Detox Often Fails

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/533793801/535325280" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Babies exposed to opioids in utero may experience withdrawal symptoms at birth, but these symptoms are treatable. Typically, the babies can go home after a few days or a couple weeks. Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Getty Images

For Newborns Exposed To Opioids, Health Issues May Be The Least Of Their Problems

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/534911289/535059283" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

A 1980 letter published in the New England Journal of Medicine was later widely cited as evidence that long-term use of opioid painkillers such as oxycodone was safe, even though the letter did not back up that claim. Education Images/UIG via Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Education Images/UIG via Getty Images

Doctor Who Wrote 1980 Letter On Painkillers Regrets That It Fed The Opioid Crisis

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/533060031/533481682" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

With an opioid addiction crisis that shows no sign of abating, how we describe addiction and dependence matters. Hero Images/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Hero Images/Getty Images

Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa (left), and Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., are drafting legislation that would call for new penalties for selling synthetic opioids. Andrew Harnik/AP hide caption

toggle caption
Andrew Harnik/AP

Lawmakers Consider Tough New Penalties For Opioid Crimes, Bucking Trend

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/531787093/531787094" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Secretary of Health and Human Services Tom Price contradicted his agency's online information about the efficacy of medication-assisted treatment for opioid addiction. Zach Gibson/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Zach Gibson/Getty Images

Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price says "We're losing as a nation," when it comes to opioid abuse. Andrew Harnik/AP hide caption

toggle caption
Andrew Harnik/AP

Communities Key To Fighting Opioid Crisis, HHS Secretary Says

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/527936103/528072991" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Dr. James Baker holds a photo of his son, Max, who had been sober for more than a year and was in college when he relapsed after surgery and died of a heroin overdose. Craig LeMoult/WGBH hide caption

toggle caption
Craig LeMoult/WGBH

How Do Former Opioid Addicts Safely Get Pain Relief After Surgery?

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/519481712/525010852" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Hannah Berkowitz in her parents' home in West Hartford, Conn. Getting intensive in-home drug treatment is what ultimately helped her get back on track, she and her mom agree. Jack Rodolico/NHPR hide caption

toggle caption
Jack Rodolico/NHPR

Home-Based Drug Treatment Program Costs Less And Works

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/523016186/524393141" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript