CDC proposes softer guidance on opioid prescriptions

NEW YORK (AP) — The nation’s top public health agency is proposing changing — and in some instances, softening — guidelines for doctors prescribing opioid painkillers.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s previous guidance was issued six years ago.

It is credited with accelerating decreases in the kind of prescribing that ignited the worst overdose epidemic in U.S. history.

But officials say it also caused some doctors to cut off patients taking prescription painkillers too soon.

And it kept the drugs from patients who might benefit.

The CDC posted a proposed update Thursday.

It is intended to foster individualized care of patients.

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