I took the morning off today to accompany our hardworking lobbyist, Leslie Emerick, at a special Governor's address at the University of Washington.
Along with many leaders of the medical community statewide, the Governor issued an executive order that brings together state agencies, local public health organizations, law enforcement, tribal governments, and other partners to act on opioids.
The four goals outlined are:
- Prevent inappropriate opioid prescriptions and use
- Treat people with opioid use disorder and connect them to support services, including housing
- Save lives by intervening in overdoses
- Use data to focus and improve our work
Offering effective treatment options for patients with chronic pain was also brought up. During the panel Q&A (see below) that followed the Governor's address, Leslie posed the question of whether acupuncture is being considered in the many agency and organizational discussions that are taking place statewide. The response from the panel members was a certain yes. We were pleased to hear that our medicine is being included and will be following up with various organizations to that end.
The panel members:
WEAMA will continue to support you in your profession by attending important meetings such as this (which sometimes also afford opportunities to meet people like the Insurance Commissioner, Mike Kreidler!)
In the meantime, please consider how you, too, can play a role in this important issue. More discussion to come at the Fall Membership Meeting! See you there!
President, Washington East Asian Medicine Association