Inside STAT: Amid a reckoning over opioids, a doctor crusades for caution in cutting back
Dr. Stefan Kertesz, a primary care physician in Birmingham, Ala., who specializes in addiction medicine, is going against the grain when it comes to combating the opioid crisis. Where other physicians and experts are advocating for strong cutbacks on patients’ dosages, Kertesz has emerged as an advocate against overly aggressive reductions in long-term opioid prescriptions. Top-down efforts to curtail such prescriptions cause more harm, he argues, including patients seeking opioids illicitly or turning to suicide. “What really gets me is when responsible parties say we will protect you, and then they call upon us to harm people,” Kertesz told STAT’s Andrew Joseph. Read more about the crusading — and controversial — physician here.