October 19th, 2023

OSKALOOSA, IA. — Mahaska Health hosted Iowa Attorney General Brenna Bird and Goldfinch Health to discuss the opioid epidemic and an evidence-based opioid reduction program. The new program, titled ERAS, stands for Enhanced Recovery After Surgery and is designed to decrease the use of pain medications after surgery. It is part of the Billion Pill Pledge, which is an opioid use prevention program designed to support patients through surgery and recovery by implementing and delivering advanced, opioid-minimizing surgery protocols. Thanks to the opioid settlement funded program, Mahaska Health has made significant strides in reducing the impact of post-surgery prescription opioids within the community through training and education. 

“We commend Attorney General Bird for recognizing the significance of prevention in addressing the opioid crisis. We are incredibly pleased to initiate this prevention program at Mahaska Health,” shared Dr. Breon, Mahaska Health Chief Medical Officer. “Opioid challenges are not just patient challenges. They are community challenges. The Billion Pill Pledge program has enhanced our ability to serve our community effectively.” 

“Our mission at Mahaska Health is to deliver the highest level of trusted expertise and care. Implementing the Billion Pill Pledge with Goldfinch Health demonstrates our commitment to enhancing patient outcomes.” shared Dr. Kollmorgen, Mahaska Health Oncology Medical Director and Vice President of Medical Affairs.  

Mahaska Health Surgical Services team provides pre-operative education, including instructions on what to drink, such as consuming electrolytes and preparing the home by having ice packs ready. Their top priority is to help patients prepare for surgery without the use of medication, answer any questions they may have, and discuss post-operative expectations. 

The event offered an opportunity to learn about the Attorney General’s collaboration with Goldfinch Health for the Billion Pill Pledge program, Mahaska Health’s participation in the initiative, and the positive impact of these partnerships on patient outcomes and how they help prevent the onset of prescription opioid addiction in the State of Iowa.    

Following the presentation, Attorney General Bird, Mahaska Health specialists, local government representatives and Goldfinch Health executives were available to discuss the initiative and address questions from the media. 

Mahaska Health Hosts Attorney General to Discuss States Opioid Reduction Program 1

Pictured: Attorney General Bird, Mahaska Health Leadership and Surgical Services Team, local government representatives and Goldfinch Health executives.

About Mahaska Health:

Mahaska Health is committed to providing compassionate, patient-centered care, state-of-the-art facilities, and outstanding healthcare to Oskaloosa, surrounding communities, and the southeast Iowa region. With a caring and compassionate team of professionals, Mahaska Health is a physician-led hospital dedicated to the health and well-being of the communities we serve with kindness and empathy.

About Goldfinch Health:

Goldfinch Health is a company who works to enhance surgical care, support patients surrounding surgery and encourages opioid minimizing pain management post-surgery. Late last year, Goldfinch Health launched the Billion Pill Pledge – an opioid first dose prevention program.


About the Billion Pill Pledge:

The Billion Pill Pledge program extends education and resources to hospitals and providers serving rural communities statewide. Deploying evidence-based approaches to pain management around surgery, the Billion Pill Pledge program aims to enact long-term change for hospitals and the communities they serve. The mission of the Billion Pill Pledge is to reduce leftover opioids after surgery in the United States by 1 billion pills each year.