athenahealth Hosts Boston Medical Center for Interview Exploring How Data and Insights Will Play a Critical Role in Helping to Reduce Opioid Deaths in the Future

Chief of general internal medicine shares details about a new data-driven research initiative designed to reduce opioid deaths by 40%

Watertown, Massachusetts, UNITED STATES

WATERTOWN, Mass., Feb. 24, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- athenahealth, Inc., a leading provider of network-enabled services for ambulatory and enterprise customers nationwide, has released a new video interview titled The Opioid Crisis and the Community Antidote. The interview offers an in-depth analysis of an $89 million Boston Medical Center-led research initiative studying the implementation of community-engaged, evidence-based interventions to reduce opioid overdose mortality across 16 Massachusetts communities.

This initiative is part of the National Institutes of Health’s HEALing Communities Study, a national study aimed at creating scalable solutions to fight the opioid overdose epidemic, with the goal of reducing overdose mortality by 40 percent within three years in some of the most heavily impacted communities. The other three states taking part are Kentucky, New York and Ohio, with a total of 67 communities across the US included in the study.

The interview between Dr. Jeffrey Samet, MD, MA, MPH, chief of general internal medicine at Boston Medical Center, and Lia Novotny, senior editor, research and editorial strategy at athenahealth, discusses the significance of the new study. The full video can be viewed by clicking here.

According to Samet, only 20 percent of people with opioid use disorder are currently receiving treatment. “Opioids have been in Massachusetts for several decades, and with the appearance of more potent opioids coming into some communities, deaths have spiked,” said Samet. “Better research can inform better decisions. My aspiration for this study is that we will be able to gather compelling data that will ensure our response to this epidemic is evidence-based and deeply influenced by data-driven insights. I appreciate the opportunity to speak about this topic with athenahealth and their interest in the work being done here in Massachusetts and nationally to combat the opioid crisis.”

“We’d like to congratulate Dr. Samet and the entire team at Boston Medical Center for driving this critically important research initiative forward to combat the opioid crisis,” said Bob Segert, chairman and CEO of athenahealth. “Data-driven insights are fundamental to the industry’s ability to combat the opioid crisis, and we have no doubt that the learnings from this study will have long-term, positive effects.”

To help in the fight against opioid addiction, athenahealth allows doctors to access a real-time Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP) report directly in athenaNet, athenahealth’s cloud-based platform, at no additional cost. A PDMP is an electronic database that tracks controlled substance prescriptions and can help identify patients who may be misusing prescription opioids or other prescription drugs and who may be at risk for overdose. Without the need to log onto a separate system to run these reports, athenahealth customers are saving approximately three minutes per report, which is time they can instead use to administer critical patient care and facilitate a nimble and targeted response.

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About athenahealth, Inc.
athenahealth partners with medical organizations across the country to drive clinical and financial results. Our vision is to create a thriving ecosystem that delivers accessible, high-quality, and sustainable healthcare for all, and we are pursuing this through our medical record, revenue cycle, patient engagement, and care coordination service offerings. Our expert teams build modern technology on an open, connected ecosystem, yielding insights that make a difference for our customers and their patients. For more information, please visit

Jean Borgman