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Drug News: December 24, 2014

COCAINE / MARIJUANA – USA
Stevie J Ordered to Rehab After Failing Drug Tests – ABC News

A cast member on VH1’s “Love & Hip Hop Atlanta” has been ordered to spend 30 days at a drug rehabilitation center after prosecutors said he repeatedly failed cocaine and marijuana tests.

DRUG REHAB – USA
America is becoming a nation of prisons– Jacksonville.com

Did the people of the United States suddenly become evil in the 1980s? The answers are explored in a study from the National Research Council of the National Academies. The first sentence says it all: “After decades of stability from the 1920s to the early 1970s, the rate of incarceration in the United States more than quadrupled in the past four decades.”

DRUG REHAB – USA
Unintended, but Not Unknown, Consequence of Prop. 47: Less Drug Treatment – Allgov.com

California is going to have to find another way to steer convicted criminals into drug treatment programs following the passage last month of Proposition 47, the measure reducing sentences of some lesser crimes from felonies to misdemeanors.

PRESCRIPTION DRUGS – USA
Painkiller Abuse, a Cyclical Challenge – New York Times

Even as the Food and Drug Administration approves new, powerful opioid-based painkillers, the United States is in the midst of an epidemic of opioid overuse. New studies showed that opioids may help only half of patients prescribed them, and many of those, only temporarily. The greatest proponents of narcotic pain killers have recognized their dangers. “Did I teach about pain management, specifically about opioid therapy, in a way that reflects misinformation? Well, against the standards of 2012, I guess I did.”

HEROIN – USA
Beyond Narcan: Why Heroin Addicts Need More Than an Overdose Antidote – NBC News

The opiate-blocker naloxone is one of the year’s most celebrated drugs, breaking into the mainstream as a magic-bullet antidote that yanks overdose victims from the brink of death with a shot of nasal spray or an intravenous injection. Police take it on patrols. Emergency medical technicians keep it in their ambulances. Ordinary Americans are stocking their medicine cabinets with it. Because of it, hundreds of people who might have died this year from taking too much heroin, Oxycontin or similar painkillers remain alive. But the lifesaving medication is not a cure.

DRUG ADDICTION – USA
Pushing an addict away comes with heartache, hope – Delaware Online

Greg had been in and out of drug rehab for the better part of his young adult life, struggling to manage a heroin addiction. About six years ago, he and a girlfriend got caught shoplifting to sustain their fix, and he immediately had to go back into rehab. This time in Harrisburg, for 90 days. Greg made it through 10 weeks. “They said to me, ‘You have to come get your son.’

ALCOHOL – USA
Alcohol in moderation good for you? Accepted wisdom may not be wise and other myth-busting alcohol truisms – Genetic Literacy Project

Some say moderate alcohol consumption is good for you. But a recent Scandinavian study reports that a protective effect of alcohol on the heart may be most obvious only in 15 percent of people, those with a particular genetic mutation.

DRUGS / ALCOHOL ADDICTION – USA
Affordable Care Act and addiction – Dodge Globe

Substance abuse treatment has historically reached only a fraction of the people with problems. About 90 percent of people who could be diagnosed with a substance use disorder do not receive treatment in any given year. In 2013, an estimated 20.2 million Americans who could benefit from treatment received no care. That is changing as result of the ACA. For the first time, millions of people can now seek treatment for a range of drug and alcohol abuse problems.

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