New Mexico lawmakers look to curb opioid addiction

Stock The ROUNDHOUSE - NM Legislature

ALBUQUERQUE (AP) – With one of the highest drug overdose death rates in the nation, New Mexico has been working for years to curb what has now been identified by the highest levels of government as a national epidemic.

The state was the first to require all licensed clinicians to undergo extra training for prescribing painkillers, but now lawmakers are looking for new ways to quell the growing addiction to opioids.

A Senate committee is scheduled to take up legislation Thursday that calls for increasing education about the addictive dangers of opioids.

The bill also requires insurance companies to cover medications that deter abuse and the state corrections department would have to consider medication-assisted treatment for inmates.

The House version of the bill cleared its first hurdle earlier this week despite concerns about the potential price tag.

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