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posted by martyb on Monday June 18 2018, @03:39PM   Printer-friendly
from the addiction-sucks dept.

US needs to invest 'tens of billions or hundreds of billions' to fight opioid epidemic

The goal of an opioid is to reduce pain, but the addictive drugs are creating pain for millions of families suffering through the crisis. Deaths from opioid overdoses number at least 42,000 a year in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control.

"This is an epidemic that's been getting worse over 10 to 20 years," Caleb Alexander, co-director of Johns Hopkins Center for Drug Safety, told CNBC's "On The Money" in a recent interview. "I think it's important that we have realistic expectations about the amount of work that it will take and the amount of coordination to turn this steamship around," Alexander added.

[...] Alexander added: "The statistics are stunning. More than 2.1 million Americans have an opioid use disorder or opioid addiction" and he says the country needs to "invest tens of billions or hundreds of billions of dollars" to shore up the treatment system. He said patients should be able to access medications that "we know work to help reduce the cravings for further opioids."

Don't mention the Portugal model!

Meanwhile, the Massachusetts Attorney General is suing members of the family that runs Purdue Pharma:

Their family name graces some of the nation's most prestigious bastions of culture and learning — the Sackler Center for Arts Education at the Guggenheim Museum, the Sackler Lefcourt Center for Child Development in Manhattan and the Sackler Institute for Developmental Psychobiology at Columbia University, to name a few.

Now the Sackler name is front and center in a lawsuit accusing the family and the company they own and run, Purdue Pharma, of helping to fuel the deadly opioid crisis that has killed thousands of Americans. Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey took the unusual step of naming eight members of the Sackler family this week in an 80-page complaint that accused Purdue Pharma of spinning a "web of illegal deceit" to boost profits.

While prosecutors in more than a dozen other states hit hard by the opioid epidemic have sued Purdue Pharma, Healey is the first to name individual Sackler family members, along with eight company executives.

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  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by bobthecimmerian on Monday June 18 2018, @08:02PM

    by bobthecimmerian (6834) on Monday June 18 2018, @08:02PM (#694678)

    Here's the thing: you are already paying for these people. You're paying for the Drug Enforcement Agency, drug investigations, drug busts, prisoners, homeless shelters, Medicaid for addicts too messed up to work, emergency services like ambulances when one is injured, and crime like theft to fund their addiction. Plus, you have people fleeing Central American and South American hellholes into the US because being an illegal immigrant that 40% of the country wants to evict or execute here is a better life than being a citizen in some sections of Mexico, Honduras, and similar because of the corruption and drug gangs.

    We learned all of the lessons we needed about heroin, cocaine, and amphetamines in Prohibition. Prohibition didn't work, it made all of the problems related to alcohol worse. This is no different. This deadly stuff needs to be legal, regulated, and taxed. It gets the gangs off the street, because you don't see Budweiser and Guinness salesman gunning each other down over sales. It even takes the gangs out of other countries, because Coors and Yuengling aren't manufactured and distributed by mass murdering gangs from outside the US borders. And you can use the tax revenue from selling this stuff to fund medical services and addiction services for the addicts - basically paying for their care with their own money.

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