Are Opioid Vending Machines in Our Future?
Mark Tyndall, public health expert and researcher at British Columbia’s CDC, has a solution for offering a safer supply of opioids to those who need medically assisted treatment: an opioid vending machine. Wired covers the story, providing details about the vending machine:
The machine, designed in partnership with a Canadian tech company, would allow preapproved drug users who receive a prescription from their doctors to access safer opioids using a biometric scan of the veins in their hands. Such a mechanized approach, Tyndall believes, is the only way that an intervention like this can match the scope of the problem. After a year and a half of development and endless delays, Tyndall expects the first of these machines to arrive in Vancouver before summer. Whether he’ll ever get the government approval or funding to actually test the thing is another question altogether.
This technology would allow patients to skip the doctor’s office and receive treatment quickly and easily, though the radical idea remains controversial.