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Louisiana lawmaker advocates opioid reduction pilot program

By Angela Childers

A Louisiana lawmaker is pushing for the state to adopt a resolution creating a pilot program to address opioid abuse among those seeking lower-back pain care management.

Republican Rep. Joseph Stagni introduced H.R. 37 Friday, requesting that the Louisiana Conservative Care Group develop a pilot program between insurance companies and care providers to encourage the use of conservative and alternative care for treating lower-back pain.

The resolution noted that opioid use among workers compensation claimants remains problematic in the state, with the cumulative dose and costs of opioids per claim escalating as the claims mature.

The pilot would push for the use of lower-back pain treatment alternatives to opioids, such as care from chiropractic physicians, physical therapists, psychologists, acupuncturists and massage therapists.

The resolution also states that the pilot program would help insurers provide better information about conservative care treatment choices and may provide them — in both group and workers comp — with incentives to encourage conservative care as participants in a pilot program.

If the pilot is formed, the resolution requests that the Louisiana Conservative Care Group submit a report of its findings and outcomes to the House no later than 60 days into the 2022 legislative session.

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