Baker Enlists Help Of Medical Schools In Fight Against Opioid Addiction Crisis

Gov. Charlie Baker met with the deans of the state's four medical schools on Wednesday to enlist their help in fighting the opioid addiction crisis here.

Deans from UMass Medical School, Harvard Medical School, Boston University School of Medicine, and Tufts School of Medicine, as well as the leadership of the Massachusetts Medical Society, met with the governor to discuss an effort to better educate medical students in pain management and "safe opioid prescribing methods."

“The avenue prescription pain pills can provide to addiction and heroin use further stresses the need for advancing safe and responsible prescribing methods in the medical community,” Baker said in a statement.

According to that statement, those at the meeting agreed to work together towards developing best practices, enhancing their school's curriculum, and identifying opportunities for collaboration across institutions.

Developing better training for doctors was one of several recommendations made by Baker's opioid working group, which was tasked with figuring out ways to help stem the addiction crisis in the state.

“Whether they aspire to be a primary care doctor, emergency physician or a surgeon, participating in this type of training early on gets them thinking about the importance of pain management for their patients as well as the importance of choosing the right pain management tool,” Public Health Commissioner Monica Bharel, who was a member of that working group, said in the statement.

The governor's office says the collaboration is the first of its kind in the country.


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