AUG
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Addiction News & Policy Update for Week Ending August 9, 2019

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The Importance of Treating Opioid Use Disorder in the Justice SystemIf we are to effectively turn the tide on the opioid crisis, one of our top priorities must be integrating treatment for opioid addiction into the justice system. Click for more 'Idiot Wind' Tells A Personal Tale Of Journeying From Addiction To RecoveryI'm not sure I would have arg...

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JUL
08
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The Opioid Crisis. How Did We Get Here?

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By: Mallory Stufsky, Substance Abuse Navigator When you hear "poppy flower," you probably have memories of 'The Wizard of Oz,' and Dorothy being carried out of the poppy field by her new friends. Although beautiful, poppy flowers were first discovered to have euphoric, potentially dangerous, effects when crushed and mixed with water. We do not know...

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APR
04
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Addiction News & Policy Update for Week Ending April 5, 2019

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Suicides after mass shootings underline contagion of high-profile tragedies At least three people who lost friends or family in school shootings have killed themselves in the last week, highlighting the effects of trauma and the problem that news of suicides can encourage copycats..Learn More   The war on opioids is saving lives. But it’s also killing people like me We had tried everything to stop the spread of my cancer. My doctor felt it was time for me to go home, get my affairs in order and say my goodbyes. “Get your Christmas shopping done early,” he said. “You have just a few months to live.”Learn More   'Am I depressed?': How teens can find mental health help online Teens don't need to read the headlines to know that they and too many of their peers are feeling lonely, sad, anxious, and suicidal. Recent headlines, however, confirm what's happening in their...

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MAR
28
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Addiction News & Policy Update for Week Ending March 29, 2019

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More U.S. Teens, Kids Seeking Mental Health Care in ERs In a hearing peppered with statistics and stories of the nation's opioid crisis, a government official told a congressional panel Thursday that the Trump administration’s plan for addressing the country’s drug crisis lacks U.S. emergency departments are seeing a surge in the number of kids and teens seeking help for mental health problems, new research warns.Learn More   The Fentanyl Failure In May 2016, a group of national health experts issued an urgent plea in a private letter to high-level officials in the Obama administration. Thousands of people were dying from overdoses of fentanyl — the deadliest drug to ever hit U.S..Learn More   Opioids and unemployment: stopping the cycle 60 Minutes producer Katy Textor talks about an investment fund resurrecting jobs in hard-hit areas. One company's solution? Hire recovering addictsLearn More   To help fight vaping, schools look to their...

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MAR
14
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Addiction News & Policy Update for Week Ending March 15, 2019

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The Opioid Dilemma: Saving Lives in the Long Run Can Take Lives in the Short Run Limiting prescriptions seems logical, but a simulation study shows it would actually increase deaths, not decrease them, in the initial years..Learn More   Which Misused Prescription Meds Send Americans to the ER? Most folks treated in a U.S. emergency room for misuse of prescription medications get into trouble because they mix different substances, a new study reports.Learn More   This Is What it's Like to Overdose on Heroin Nine Times I couldn't see anything, but I could hear my mom chattering on the phone. Quick, Cuban Spanish broken by an occasional burst of laughter. Her television blared in the background. A reality show, I think. I couldn't feel my body, either.Learn More   The “I Do” of Addiction People might mean well, but, benign or not, when somebody asks, how’s your mama doing, my impulse...

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MAR
04
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Fentanyl Test Strips: The Controversial New Tool to Fight Overdoses

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Written by: Caroline Capriccio, Wellspring Intern A new test strip that determines whether a street drug has been laced with fentanyl is being met with praise and skepticism. Fentanyl, a synthetic opioid used as a pain reliever, is now the deadliest drug in America. It is a drug that is 50 to 100 times more potent than morphine and was linked to nearly 29% of all overdose deaths in 2016. Fentanyl produces a powerful high and a small amount can cause a fatal overdose. It is cheap and sometimes mixed into street drugs without a buyer’s knowledge. An even bigger issue is the fact that heroin and fentanyl look nearly identical. A user never fully knows what they are taking and given the potency, it’s deadly. Fentanyl test strips were originally developed by Canadian biotechnology company BTNX. Its purpose is to reduce harm associated with drug use by offering clients the...

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FEB
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Addiction News & Policy Update for Week Ending February 22, 2019

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Nearly 1 in 7 US kids and teens has a mental health condition, and half go untreated Half of children with a mental health condition in the United States go without treatment, according to a study published Monday in the journal JAMA Pediatrics.Learn More   Teaching to the Drug Test Teachers are proving particularly vulnerable to disconnects between state and federal law that send conflicting messages about the use of medical marijuana.Learn More   The latest way to combat the opioid epidemic — student-loan relief A new program will provide up to $75,000 of student loan relief for health care providers working on substance use disordersLearn More   Opioid prescriptions for pets surge, mirroring human crisis Many more Americans may be getting opioids for their pets, and veterinarians appear to be prescribing increasingly potent versions of these drugs to animals, a small study suggests. Learn More   Insurers Making It Harder...

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FEB
07
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Addiction News & Policy Update for Week Ending February 8, 2019

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Steep Climb in Benzodiazepine Prescribing By Primary Care Doctors The percentage of outpatient medical visits that led to a benzodiazepine prescription doubled from 2003 to 2015, according to a study published Friday. And about half those prescriptions came from primary care physicians.Learn More   One percent of US teenagers are using flakka -- but it could be more Just under 1% of American teenagers are knowingly using the synthetic drug flakka, according to new research.Learn More   FDA is failing to protect kids from e-cigarettes, American Lung Association says The American Lung Association gives a federal agency and individual state governments poor marks in a new report card evaluating tobacco prevention programs.Learn More   Parents worried about risks, but still think opioids are best for kids’ pain relief Headlines filled with frightening news of opioid abuse, overdoses and reports that 90 percent of addictions start in the teen years could make...

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JAN
16
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School Athletes and Opioids: A Risky Proposition

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By Elaine Chan, Intern The New Year can offer many, new, and exciting opportunities. However, the New Year can also pose arduous obstacles. One of the challenges that school administrators and communities may face is the opioid misuse prevalence among student–athletes as new sports season starts. Despite the positive benefits young athletes gain from participating in organized sports, such participation may actually put some adolescents at risk for substance use because of increased access to pain medications.Youths who participate in high-injury sports may be surrounded by peers who are more likely to have leftover prescription opioids, making it easier to receive diverted prescription opioids to ease injuries without having to acknowledge to parents and coaches that they need medical attention (e.g., hiding injuries from coaches to participate). Therefore, youths involved in organized sports may be at a higher risk to misuse opioid medications because of their increased risk for injury. Great...

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JAN
10
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Addiction News & Policy Update for Week Ending January 11, 2019

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Deaths Level Off—and Even Decline—in Some Opioid Hotspots New Hampshire, Ohio cite efforts with overdose-reversal drug and push against painkiller abuseLearn More   Benzodiazepine Use and Misuse Among Adults in the United States Benzodiazepine use among U.S. adults was higher than previously reported, and misuse accounted for nearly 20% of use overall.Learn More   Amphetamine Use, Abuse and Dependence Claim Lines Increased over 3,000 Percent in 10 Years Anxiety Claim Lines Rose over 200 Percent, FAIR Health Study Shows,Learn More   Opioid-Makers Face Wave of Lawsuits in 2019 The next 12 months might just redefine the way America thinks about and responds to the opioid epidemic that now claims more than 40,000 lives each year. Learn More   NJ Towns Buck Marijuana Legalization As marijuana legalization inches forward in New Jersey, a coalition of mayors, law enforcement, and town councils are working to ensure that dispensaries never open up shop in...

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