Report Finds Long-Term Painkiller Use on the Rise

Nearly 7 million insured Americans filled at least one prescription for an opioid between 2009 and 2013, according to a new Express Scripts report. Data also showed that, while fewer patients are taking opioids these days, those that do so are using the drugs for longer periods. “Not only are more people using these medications chronically, they are using them at higher doses than we would necessarily expect,” stated Dr. Glen Stettin, Express Scripts senior vice president. “And they are using them in combinations for which there isn't a lot of clinical justification.” (source: NY Times).