Addressing the Prescription Drug Abuse Epidemic
- Approximately 6.1 million report nonmedical use of prescription drugs in the past month – meaning use by someone other than the person for whom a drug was prescribed, or use only for the experience or feeling they cause.
- More than 60 Americans die every day from a prescription drug overdose.
- Overdose deaths involving prescription painkillers have quadrupled since 1999 and now outnumber deaths from all illicit drugs, including heroin and cocaine, combined.
Headlines in AARP Bulletin ~ Sept 2015
“Deadly Drugs ~ Deaths From Pain Medications Rise 700%” www.aarp.org/bulletin.com Sept 2015 Issue, Vol 56
Prescription drug related deaths now outnumber those from heroin and cocaine combined, and drug overdose deaths exceed motor vehicle-related deaths in 29 states and Washington, D.C. Misuse and abuse of prescription drugs costs the country an estimated $53.4 billion a year in lost productivity, medical costs and criminal justice costs, and currently only one in 10 Americans with a substance abuse disorder receives treatment.
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