West Virginia expands Medicaid drug treatment
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — West Virginia health officials say Medicaid recipients are beginning to receive expanded addiction treatment following federal approval in October.
The Department of Health and Human Resources says starting this week services statewide include a new screening tool to identify treatment needs and Medicaid coverage for providing methadone for opioid addiction withdrawal.
The state also is designing a statewide initiative to make the opioid antidote naloxone more widely available.
The program waiver from the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services is more than 80 percent federally funded.
Meanwhile, state Senate leaders introduced Gov. Jim Justice’s administration’s bill that would require hospitals, police and other emergency responders to report all suspected or confirmed overdoses.
Overdoses killed 864 people statewide in 2016.
About 525,000 of West Virginia’s nearly 1.8 million people are enrolled in Medicaid.