Using Innovation and Data to Fight the Opioid Epidemic

When Dr. Baruch Fertel took a job at the Cleveland Clinic in 2013 he knew he had a crisis on his hands. The nation was in the grip of an opioid epidemic and Ohio was ground zero. And Fertel quickly realized that hospitals were, in some respects, doing more harm than good, often prescribing someone who came in with an ankle sprain or other small injury 30 Percocets because it was the default in the electronic health record (EHR). “That’s a huge amount for something that maybe is a day or two,” said Fertel, the Director of Quality and Operations at the storied medical center.