PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Opioid addiction is a big problem that has been growing across the country. National efforts are underway to battle the issue. Even medical schools are joining the attack.
More than 60 medical schools have agreed to begin opioid prescription education in the fall so future physicians have a better understanding of pain management issues. Dr. Frederick Goldstein, a professor of neuroscience, physiology and pharmacology at Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, explains what students need to know.
“To different addiction from physical dependence — addiction is a serious problem, it’s psychological,” Goldstein says. “Physical dependence is when your body makes an adjustment to a particular drug. A good example is caffeine.”
He says PCOM has been educating students about opiods and pain management for years and will now add more material to the curriculum.
“We do provide quite a bit of instruction on the use of opioids; the proper dosing, the use of adjuncts,” Goldstein says. “We have somewhere between six hours over a couple of courses where we spend time going over cases with the students.”
Opioid addiction has become such a big problem in this country, President Obama recently announced a plan to set aside a billion dollars to help people get the addiction treatment they need.