Alternative Pain Management Focus of Senate Opioid Measure 

drugsBOSTON (AP) — Massachusetts doctors and health insurers would be encouraged to consider alternative pain management treatments under a bill that takes aim at the state’s deadly opioid addiction crisis.

The measure scheduled for debate Thursday in the Senate would provide a list of non-opioid pain medications and allow patients to indicate in their medical files that they don’t want to be given opioids under any circumstances.

Patients could also ask pharmacists to fill only part of an opioid prescription from a doctor.

State officials say deaths from heroin and other opioid-related overdoses have been increasing steadily in recent years.

The Senate bill would also require public schools to question students — once in middle school and again in high school — to determine if they’re at risk of substance abuse.

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