Midday Healthwatch: Opioid Strategies, Capping Rx Prices, Soda-Free Kids' Meals | WYPR

Midday Healthwatch: Opioid Strategies, Capping Rx Prices, Soda-Free Kids' Meals

Feb 28, 2018

Abuse of Rx painkillers is fueling America's opioid crisis.
Credit Photo by Tom Kelley/Getty Images

On this edition of the Midday Healthwatch:  a busy week for public health advocates.  Members of the Baltimore City Council voted unanimously Monday to approve a measure requiring restaurants to replace the sugary soft drinks offered in most kids’ meals with more healthful milk, juice or water -- a response to the city's rampant childhood-obesity rates. In Annapolis, advocates pressed state lawmakers for new controls on soaring prescription drug prices. They also lobbied to bolster mandatory insurance provisions of the beleaguered Affordable Care Act, and they sparred over a bill that would impose tough new conditions on the use of the life-saving anti-overdose drug Narcan, or Naloxone, by repeat opioid abusers.

Joining Tom in the studio -- and taking a break from the front lines of public health advocacy -- is  our regular guest on the Midday HealthwatchBaltimore City Health Commissioner, Dr. Leana Wen.  She talks about some of the key legislative battles being waged over public health policy, and addresses listeners' comments and questions. 

This week, Time published a special issue of its magazine devoted entirely to the nation's opioid epidemic. The issue is composed entirely of the work of Time's deputy editor of photography, Paul Moakley and photojournalist James Nachtwey