A decision by Ohio Governor John Kasich to change the way doctors can bill Medicaid for a painkiller addition treatment may make it easier to obtain in the long run. The administration says the change could ultimately affect far more patients than a $1 million pilot program for ex-offenders vetoed by the governor last month.
Under the new change taking effect in October, pharmacies can bill Medicaid directly for Vivitrol and have the drug delivered to a doctor's office without an upfront payment.
That replaces the current system where doctors must pay for Vivitrol injections out of pocket, then seek reimbursements through Medicaid. Eric Poklar in Kasich's Office of Health Transformation says Vivitrol shows promise and is a drug worth dispensing.