Reports are coming in across the USA, from places like Montgomery, Maryland, Ellensberg, Washington, Concord, New Hampshire, throughout Kentucky and in the Twin Cities, Minnesota. Heroin use and heroin overdoses are growing. According to recent research by SAMHSA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration), the number of first-time heroin users has nearly doubled lately, from around 90,000 "first-timers" in 2006 to a whopping 178,000 in 2011.
Abuse-deterrent formulations of drugs and prescription drug take-back days are well and good, but they don't reverse an overdose, they don't educate about drug safety and they don't provide ready access to treatment. They don't address the factors that cause people to turn to drugs for relief and they don't acknowledge the uncomfortable fact that despite our best efforts, for some portion of the population, rehabs won't work, methadone won't work, and neither will cold turkey, tough love, prison, prayer or 12-Step.
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