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Medical Procedure Promises to Control Chronic Back and Knee Pain And Reduce Opioid Use in New Jersey

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, In September, Congress agreed to a series of measures aimed at addressing the nation’s overwhelming opioid epidemic.  Politicians, in rare show of bipartisan agreement, were responding to a public outcry over the 72,000 overdose deaths that occurred in 2017, a majority of which – about 50,000 – involved opioids.

An epidemic of addiction has ravaged communities across the United States, including locally here in the tri-state area, where more than 1,400 people have died from an overdose. 

For years, prescription pain medications have been widely used to help control chronic pain. But now, thanks to advances in medical science and technology, there are new, minimally invasive procedures that can help control pain, instead.

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Fed’s Establish Regional Medicare Fraud Strike Force


the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Newark NJ,  Assistant Attorney General Brian A. Benczkowski of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division today announced the formation of the Newark/Philadelphia Regional Medicare Fraud Strike Force (Regional Strike Force), a joint law enforcement effort that brings together the resources and expertise of the Health Care Fraud Unit in the Justice Department’s Criminal Division’s Fraud Section (HCF Unit), the U.S. Attorney’s Offices for the District of New Jersey and the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, as well as law enforcement partners at the FBI, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector General (HHS-OIG) and U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

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July 30th ,2018

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

MENDHAM NJ, With more than eight people dying from drug overdoses in N.J. everyday, according to a recent article by the Star-Ledger, U.S. Senate candidate Hugin met with leaders of Daytop New Jersey and Morris County Sheriff James M. Gannon at the Daytop New Jersey Academy in Mendham to tour and discuss what can be done to fight this epidemic.

Daytop New Jersey is a treatment program for individuals of all ages suffering from substance use disorders. Daytop was the final stop for Hugin in what was a busy week that includes visits to the Morris CARES program and Narcan training, and the Robbinsville Senior Center.

“We need to reverse the stigma around mental illness and substance abuse,” said Bob Hugin. “My time with the residents and leadership of Daytop New Jersey was truly an eye-opening experience to the phenomenal work being done not only by the administrators, but by the residents as well. The progress they are making is truly remarkable.”

Daytop Academy is the only program in New Jersey with a specialty substance use disorder facility with a special education high school that could meet all the needs of the students’ Individualized Education Program (IEP). Daytop New Jersey provides a continuum of treatment services which include residential treatment for adolescents, outpatient treatment for adolescents and adults, recovery-based day school for students in grades 6-12, and a halfway house for adult women.

“This is a disease that does not discriminate; Daytop is committed to addressing the needs of everyone battling a substance use disorder in New Jersey no matter what their age, socio-economic status, or race,” said James Curtin, who serves as the President & CEO. “It is encouraging to see Mr. Hugin tour our facility, listen to what our needs are, and discuss how Washington can be a partner in this local fight.”

“Today’s discussion needs to be one that happens every day around every dinner table,” said Sheriff Gannon. “For too long I have seen too many families go from broken teeth and broken bones to broken families.”

“Treatment for substance disorders has evolved as the science and psychology communities provide evidence of the benefits of things like our music therapy program for ‘re-wiring’ the brain as it recovers from a substance use disorder,” said Kim O’Connor VP of Clinical Services at Daytop.

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Opioid epidemic may be underestimated, CDC report says


By Susan Scutti, CNN

Updated 1:03 PM ET, Tue April 25, 2017

(CNN)Experts say the United States is in the throes of an opioid abuse epidemic, causing 91 overdose deaths each day. Yet the total number of opioid-related deaths may still be underestimated, suggests new research from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“In early spring, the Minnesota Department of Health was notified of an unexplained death: a middle-aged man who died suddenly at home,” said Dr. Victoria Hall, a CDC field officer based in Minnesota. He’d been on long-term opioid therapy for back pain, and his family had worried he might be abusing his medication. The medical examiner assigned to the autopsy tested for and diagnosed both pneumonia and a toxic level of opioids.