Opioid abuse started rising within the late Nineties and was declared a public well being emergency in 2017. For years, HealthPartners Institute analysis groups have been on the lookout for methods to battle this rising epidemic.
Our work has develop into much more essential as opioid overdoses made a drastic improve throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Information from the Minnesota Division of Well being confirmed a 55% improve in opioid overdose deaths throughout the first six months of 2020, in comparison with the identical time in 2019.
“We’re seeing the consequences of the COVID pandemic crashing into the opioid epidemic,” stated Rebecca Rossom, MD, senior investigator at HealthPartners Institute. “The rise in overdoses is pushed by artificial opioids, particularly fentanyl.”
However these deaths are preventable, Dr. Rossom stated. And he or she and her group on the Institute are launching a brand new software referred to as “Opioid Wizard” to assist proactively establish these prone to opioid use dysfunction (OUD) and overdose.
How the Opioid Wizard works its magic
The Opioid Wizard builds on our present Priorities Wizard Scientific Resolution Assist platform, which helps clinicians simply establish sufferers’ greatest alternatives for bettering their well being and well-being.
The platform makes use of advanced algorithms that take well being and prescription histories within the digital well being file (EHR) under consideration and flag sufferers who’re prone to OUD or overdose. By proactively figuring out sufferers with sure danger elements, like earlier opioid prescriptions, clinicians can ship the perfect care throughout a medical appointment.
If an individual has vital danger, the Opioid Wizard will immediate clinicians to display screen their affected person for OUD. It additionally has OUD remedy choices, together with acceptable drugs. In some instances, the clinician is even inspired to order a naloxone rescue equipment. Naloxone is a drugs used to deal with an opioid overdose.
Utilizing information to offer hope and enhance lives
The “Wizard” know-how has been examined in different areas, like cardiology, and has already delivered profitable outcomes for sufferers.
For instance, the Cardiovascular Wizard helped establish sufferers who may benefit from sure cardiovascular therapies by flagging danger elements akin to blood stress, smoking standing and physique mass index. Information reveals this software helped decrease the 10-year danger of coronary heart illness by 2%.
Now, we’re hoping the identical know-how may also help us make an influence on the opioid disaster with early OUD and overdose intervention.
Over the span of two years, Dr. Rossom and her group will examine outcomes from 30 collaborating clinics to see if the software has any influence on scientific care and outcomes. They’ll consider adjustments in OUD diagnoses, rescue equipment orders, OUD remedy prescriptions, emergency division visits, hospitalizations and different outcomes. The analysis will probably be finished in collaboration with Essentia Well being and Geisinger well being methods.
“If we will begin sufferers with OUD on drugs, all-cause mortality decreases by 50%,” Dr. Rossom stated. “There are few interventions in well being care that enhance mortality outcomes as dramatically. Opioid Wizard will hopefully enhance remedy entry for sufferers with OUD.”