The LePage administration imposed a 24-month lifetime limit on drug rehabilitation programs using methadone and suboxone through MaineCare. The rule was put into effect Jan. 1 and made retroactive.
Those programs are broken. Drug dosages to addicts need to be slowly reduced, not increased year after year as they now do. The programs are administered without any plan for a cure, only a treatment. The programs keep people addicted.
Right now, there are thousands of drug addicts who have been kept on drugs for years and they are being cut off from funding, effective immediately.
The act puts many people in danger. Children of these addicts will be neglected because their parents will be too sick to care for them. They will be abused because their parents will be out of their minds from withdrawals. Theft will rise. The safety of the elderly, hospitals — anyone who may have those types of medications in their homes — is at risk (and pharmacies). The suicide rate will rise. Emergency rooms will be flooded. The list goes on.
There are thousands of patients in those programs that are state-funded and state-approved. Now there are thousands of addicts who are being cut off from treatment.
Limits do need to be imposed, but not a lifetime limit and certainly not one that puts communities in danger.
Perhaps it is time to hold doctors and pharmaceuticals accountable. They benefit not only from the sale, but the outcome as well.
Audrey Leavitt, Mechanic Falls