Posted inHealth, News, Politics and Government

Colorado governor vetoes bill that sought to reduce prescription opioid abuse

Gov. Jared Polis on Thursday vetoed a bill that sought to reduce opioid abuse in Colorado because it would have increased the cost of health insurance. Provisions in House Bill 1085 requiring insurance carriers to cover at least six annual physical therapy visits, six annual acupuncture visits, six annual occupational therapy visits, and six annual […]

Posted inCOVID, Health, News

The hidden deaths from coronavirus: People are dying after the pandemic removed their safety nets

By Markian Hawryluk, Kaiser Health News BROOMFIELD — Sara Wittner had seemingly gotten her life back under control. After a December relapse in her battle with drug addiction, the 32-year-old completed a 30-day detox program and started taking a monthly injection to block her cravings for opioids. She was engaged to be married, working for […]

Posted inHealth, News, Politics and Government

We’re dealing with a pandemic, but remember the opioid crisis? Coronavirus is likely to make it worse.

The coronavirus pandemic overshadowed a long list of other problems that suddenly seemed less urgent in the wake of a deadly virus and its economic destruction.  Included at the top of that list: the opioid epidemic. That crisis is still raging in Colorado and predicted to get even worse thanks to the stress, isolation and […]

Posted inCOVID, Education, Health, Politics and Government

Colorado’s coronavirus budget crunch is putting Democratic accomplishments at risk

Anna Layden makes $57,000 a year as an educator in Durango and owes the same amount in student debt after putting herself through college and graduate school. To pay it down, she applied for a $5,000 loan repayment through a new initiative for Colorado teachers. Deana Cairo wanted to see her 19-year-old son with developmental […]

Posted inColoradans, Health, News, Politics and Government

Six RVs to help rural Colorado’s opioid addiction are coming to a parking lot near you

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — The RV will hit the road for a different northwest Colorado town each day, carrying urine toxicology tests, opioid-overdose antidotes, a counselor and a nurse. Sundays at the Mercantile in Hayden. Wednesdays at the Safeway in Fraser. Thursdays at the City Market in Granby. The rig is one of six that soon […]

Posted inHealth, News

A decade into the opioid crisis, Colorado hospitals have changed the way they treat opioid-exposed babies. And it’s helping.

Two years ago, Colorado babies born addicted to opioids often were given doses of methadone or morphine and, on average, stayed in the hospital for 17 days as nurses weaned them off the drugs. Now, the average hospital stay for a newborn going through opioid withdrawal has dropped to 6.5 days. And instead of treating […]

Posted inHealth, News, Politics and Government

Colorado could soon get a lot of money from opioid settlements. But where should those dollars go?

Colorado could soon be in line for tens of millions — maybe even hundreds of millions — of dollars from legal settlements related to the opioid epidemic. That kind of windfall would represent a major leap forward in the state’s effort to combat the crisis, which has claimed more than 5,000 Coloradans’ lives since 2000. […]

Posted inCrime and Courts, Health, News

Judge: Purdue workers should get bonuses, but maybe not CEO being sued by Colorado and other states

By Goeff Mulvihill, The Associated Press WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. — More time is needed to sort out whether the CEO of OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma should receive a $1.3 million bonus next year, but the company should be allowed to pay about $35 million in bonuses to 682 other employees, the judge overseeing the company’s […]

Posted inBusiness, Crime and Courts, Health, News

Bankruptcy judge considers $1.3 million bonus for Purdue Pharma CEO being sued by Colorado

By Geoff Mulvihill, The Associated Press The judge overseeing the bankruptcy case of OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma will consider Wednesday whether the company’s CEO should get a bonus equal to half his $2.6 million salary. Attorneys general representing about half the states say the company’s chief executive Craig Landau shouldn’t get a bonus, arguing in […]

Posted inCrime and Courts, News, Politics and Government

A new Colorado law makes possessing thousands of fatal fentanyl doses a misdemeanor. Prosecutors are worried.

Colorado’s top federal prosecutor is sounding the alarm over a new state law that potentially makes possessing thousands of fatal doses of synthetic opioids a misdemeanor, saying it sends the wrong message as law enforcement and health officials are warning the public about the substances’ danger.  State lawmakers earlier this year passed a bill that […]