Coroner, physician general promote opioid prescribing guidelines

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – Pennsylvania Physician General Dr. Rachel Levine and Dauphin County Coroner Graham Hetrick teamed up Tuesday to promote a new set of opioid prescribing guidelines.

Among the recommendations is to discourage doctors from prescribing opioid painkillers to patients who are also taking benzodiazepines. Also called “benzos,” the drugs are commonly used to treat anxiety and insomnia and are known better under the common names Xanex and Valium.

“Benzodiazepines in addition to an opioid increases the risk of overdose four times,” Levine said.

The list of guidelines can be viewed here.

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