Trending News Today: New Synthetic Opioid Causes Deaths in Utah

Top news of the day from across the healthcare landscape.

A large hospital network in California is now asking companies to waive their rights to sue the hospital. If the companies to do not sign a waiver, their employers who use the network of hospitals, physicians, and healthcare services will no longer receive discounts for receiving in-network care, according to NPR. Critics have said that signing the waiver would help strengthen the provider’s network, while hurting the patients.

Last year Texas’ Medicaid program cut $350 million in reimbursements to early childhood intervention therapists and healthcare providers. These cuts were made to provide relief from billions of dollars in property taxes, and affect Texas children with disabilities. Now, providers of in-home treatment for these children have been providing the treatments despite the financial losses, NPR reported.

A new synthetic opioid, called U-47700, was the cause of death for 2 teenage boys in Utah. The drug was developed in hopes of finding a superior painkiller, and is about 8 times as strong as morphine, according to The Washington Post. This powerful drug was basically unknown until a chemist in China discovered it, and labs around the world started manufacturing the drug for a cheap and legal high.