Correlation as “they” say is not causation. But it’s an interesting question that deserves exploration. However, there are probably a handful of significant reasons why opioids have become the problem that they are. See the links to the right for more on this. It certainly isn’t JUST Obamacare.
The current decline is said to be due to the opioid epidemic, which has produced a rapid increase in overdose deaths.
But what’s driving the opioid epidemic?
This is where things get interesting. Last year, Time magazine reported that ObamaCare was at least partly to blame. Under ObamaCare, Medicare payments to hospitals are conditioned in part on a patient satisfaction survey, which included questions on pain management. That, in turn, health officials said, created an incentive for hospitals to overprescribe opioids.
In recognition of this problem, Obama removed pain management from the questionnaire in late 2016…
…If that misguided policy wasn’t a driving force, there is clearly a correlation between ObamaCare and the opioid crisis. Overdose data from the CDC show a sharp spike in the trend in non-heroin opioid overdoses starting precisely in 2014 — the very year ObamaCare went into effect.
What’s more, there’s evidence to suggest that opioid deaths increased faster in states that expanded Medicaid under ObamaCare than those states that didn’t.
So, it’s at least possible that ObamaCare, by expanding access to prescription drugs and pushing hospitals to prescribe them, helped fuel the current epidemic. And in doing so, it helped to shortenlife expectancy. That would be supremely ironic.