President Joe Biden eliminated a reform made by former President Trump that allowed most doctors to prescribe buprenorphine, a drug highly effective against heroin and other opioid addictions.
Two doctors, Brian Barnett and Jeremy Weleff, wrote an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal on Feb. 8, expressing surprise at the government’s decision to rescind the measure and appealed to reinstate it, given the enormous benefits of the treatment.
Biden administration rescinds effective opioid addiction treatment
“Among the Trump administration’s last and best decisions was to allow almost all physicians to prescribe buprenorphine, one of the most effective treatments for opioid addiction,” the doctors wrote.
“Previously, only doctors who had completed an eight-hour training course and obtained a license from the Drug Enforcement Administration could [prescribed buprenorphine]. Only 7% of physicians are certified to prescribe the drug, and more than half of rural counties lacked a single prescriber as of 2018.,” the editorial said.
Doctors recounted that in France, after passing a Trump-like reform with free access to buprenorphine to treat opioid addicts, heroin overdose deaths were reduced by up to 80% in four years.
According to Breitbart, the Biden administration’s decision responds to the fact that the reform made by Trump had legal loopholes and also did not have approval within the White House budget, arguments to which the two doctors appealed.
“If the only issue is procedural, why not let the change stand until Congress passes legislation to regularize it? There is every reason to do so: Nearly 130 Americans die of opioid overdoses on an average day,” Barnett and Weleff exclaimed.
The doctors went a step further and explained why the drug, which is also an opium derivative, is so effective in treating addiction.
“Buprenorphine’s chemical structure allows it to reduce cravings for other opioids like heroin while decreasing the risk of overdose should patients relapse on them,” they explained in the letter.
They added, “Just as impressive, it doesn’t cause the intense euphoria of other opioids, and it is usually formulated in combination with naloxone, a medication that blocks buprenorphine’s effects if injected, making misuse rare.”
In the early days, the Biden administration also suspended another Trump executive order to reduce the cost of insulin to low-income Americans that was to go into effect on Jan. 22, reportedly to “review” its impact.
It is widely known that Biden was the Establishment’s candidate: big banks, big corporations, and Big Pharma donated millions to his campaign, and perhaps therein lies the answer to these kinds of decisions that not only do not benefit the people but hurt them as well.