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Drugs News: December 10, 2015

DRUG TREATMENT – USA
Drug treatment is incremental, often with setbacks. It’s still a source of hope. – Bangor Daily News

Gov. Paul LePage threw out a startling statistic at Tuesday’s town hall meeting in Portland — 90 percent of those addicted to heroin die as a result of their addiction. Although the governor’s number was an exaggeration, the real number — 50 percent die prematurely — is just as shocking and should galvanize support to do more to fight addiction.

DRUG ADDICTION TREATMENT – USA
California revamps Medicaid addiction treatment – Behavioral News

California is overhauling its substance abuse treatment system for low-income people, embarking on a massive experiment to create a smoother path for those with addiction from detox through recovery.

PRESCRIPTION DRUGS – USA
If Prescription Drug Addiction Is a Disease, Why Does the Law Make It So Hard to Get Treatment? – National Journal

After the pain of withdrawal was over, the lure of the drugs was still there. “The whole time, even though withdrawal had been so horrible,” Emily said, “[all] I could think about was getting back to New York and getting high again. It was like an obsession. It was like none of the bad stuff had ever happened—all I could do was remember the good times.”

PRESCRIPTION DRUGS – USA
Chapman expert says pharmacists can help stem the epidemic of prescription drug abuse – OC Register

Though Americans make up 5 percent of the world’s population, they consume 75 percent of the world’s prescription drugs and 99 percent of the world’s hydrocodone, according to a statement from the National Rx Drug Abuse Summit, making finding a solution to the national and local drug abuse problem a major priority.

ALCOHOL – USA / UK
6 celebrities who have battled alcohol addiction – Music News

Celebrities are known for their excess. You might be more surprised to hear that a celebrity didn’t drink, rather than hearing about another Lindsay Lohan-type who was a walking train wreck thanks to their drinking, drugging, and other shenanigans. Yet there are some celebrities who you might be surprised to learn have struggled with alcohol addiction, and who you might learn something from about handling the problem.

ALCOHOL / DRUG ADDICTION – USA
Some with alcohol and drug disorders no longer want to be anonymous – The Oakland Press

“So long as we keep ourselves in the shadows, we will remain in the shadows,” said Chris Poulos, 33, a third-year law student at the University of Maine who was addicted and homeless as a teenager and served nearly three years in a federal prison for dealing cocaine.

PRESCRIPTION DRUGS / HEROIN – USA
Heroin addiction ‘isn’t necessarily the individual’s fault’ – Penn Live

People must understand addiction to painkillers and heroin is a medical condition, not purely a matter of personal choice, and the state must take major steps including providing more money toward addiction treatment. “It is a disease. It’s not necessarily a character flaw.”

PRESCRIPTION DRUGS / HEROIN – USA
From back injury to heroin overdose: ‘We live with it in solitude’ – Penn Live

Jeff and Vickie Sherrick of Hummelstown lost their daughter, Kelly, to a heroin OD at age 31. She died less than a year ago. Kelly had first become addicted to painkillers given for a back injury. The picture on her parent’s bookshelf shows a tanned and fit Kelly Sherrick holding a certificate honoring her “outstanding and exemplary service to persons with mental disabilities.”

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