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Opiate Abuse and Pregnant Mothers

Opiate addiction is affecting people from all walks of life. It does not matter what social background, race, religion or even where you live. Opiates seems to find their way to people in all cities and towns all across the country. I speak with thousands of people a year and everyone says that I would not believe how bad it is where they live. It is sad to say, but opiates are everywhere from the big cities to the smallest towns in America. It is affecting our nations youth and even has a hold on our elderly. One demographic that is facing serious issues with addiction to opiates are pregnant women.

At the forefront of many of the new laws and ways to curb the abuse on prescription painkillers and heroin, the state of Ohio is doing everything in it's power to help it's pregnant citizens. They are very pro-active in their approach and are by far one of the best states to get help in the United States. MetroHealth Medical Center in Cleveland has a new pilot program designed to help treat opiate-dependent pregnant women and the babies they give birth to, thanks to more than $395,000 coming from the state. Many citizens have high hopes for the pilot program and expect it to save many lives.

The MetroHealth's Maternal Opiate Medical Support program, also known as M.O.M.S. Is the first of four in the state of Ohio. All four of the programs are paid with grant money given through the Governor's Office of Health Transformation's Innovation Fund. Partners in the program are the Ohio Medicaid Program and the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services.

The program is set for to run for a 3 year period and cost the state $4.2 million. It is estimated to reduce infant hospital stays by 30 percent. This alone in the long run with save the state taxpayers a lot of money. The three other M.O.M.S. programs will be located in Hamilton, Franklin and Athens counties.

The program is expected to help treat up to 125 women and their babies at the MetroHealth M.O.M.S. Program alone. The mission of the program is to reduce the number of hospital stays and time for the dependent mothers and their babies suffering from neonatal abstinence syndrome.

Mother's who are dependent on heroin or prescription painkillers are afraid of stopping abruptly during pregnancy. The toll that withdrawal takes on the body is not recommended by most doctors. It can lead to miscarriages and other ailments to the baby. More and more doctors are leaning towards using suboxone during pregnancy and dealing with the neonatal abstinence syndrome once the baby is on it's own and they are able to treat and monitor them carefully.

Once again I applaud the state of Ohio. They are putting their citizens first. Yes it may cost money up front but the amount of money saved in the long run will be worth it to taxpayers. At the same time, you are helping out infants and mothers that would not normally be able to get the help they need.

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