Monthly Archives: March 2015


Opioid Crisis Leads to Needle Exchange Programs


Despite the fact that needle exchange programs prevent the spread of infectious disease and ultimately save lives, there are many places throughout the country that do not allow for the safe exchange of hypodermic needles. In fact, they are currently only 33 states and Washington, D.C. which have active needle exchange programs, according to the North American Needle Exchange Network. In response to a growing concern over spikes in disease transfer, the result of the prescription opioid and heroin crisis facing [...]

Opioid Crisis Leads to Needle Exchange Programs2015-03-31T14:09:02-07:00

Misinformed – Prescription Drug Abuse Among Teenagers


Despite a plethora of warning labels posted on the sides of prescription drug bottles, many users do not fully grasp the dangers that can accompany the used of powerful opioid narcotics. In fact, more people lose their life every year from legal drugs, like OxyContin (oxycodone) than those using illegal drugs, such as cocaine and heroin. New research suggests that a large number of teenagers are unaware of the serious dangers present with the use of legally prescribed drugs, Science Daily [...]

Misinformed – Prescription Drug Abuse Among Teenagers2015-03-26T13:21:25-07:00

Biological Clue Could Explain Alcohol Dependence


Science has long struggled to determine who may develop a dependence to alcohol and who will not, based off of genetic markers. While it is known that environment plays a huge part in addiction, having a better understanding of the genetic link will help science develop better and more effective methods for treating the disease. Researchers at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) School of Medicine have found a “biological clue” that may be responsible for why some people develop a dependence to [...]

Biological Clue Could Explain Alcohol Dependence2015-03-24T14:32:26-07:00

China Calls for Ban on Ketamine


The drug ketamine is in the public spotlight as China calls for a worldwide ban on the drug, the BBC reports. Despite the fact that the majority of ketamine is produced in China, national representatives will propose a ban on the drug before the annual session of the United Nations Commission on Narcotic Drugs. Ketamine was originally developed as a horse tranquilizer, but now the drug is mainly used in hospital settings around the world for starting and maintaining anesthesia. Like [...]

China Calls for Ban on Ketamine2015-03-19T12:04:35-07:00

Many Baby Boomers Abusing Drugs


There is growing concern regarding the abuse of drugs among Baby Boomers, people born between 1946 and 1964. Facing challenges with aging, officials say that the number of Baby Boomers turning to drugs to cope has led to a rise in overdoses, The Wall Street Journal reports. Historically, this generation is well known for its experimentation with illicit substances in the 1960’s and ‘70’s, using drugs at the highest rates of any generation, according to the article. Now, living in a [...]

Many Baby Boomers Abusing Drugs2015-03-17T14:52:13-07:00

Abuse-Deterrent OxyContin Only Somewhat Effective


Over the last five years, there has been a call for prescription drug companies to re-formulate their opioid narcotics to make them abuse resistant. Commonly prescribed prescription narcotics, such as OxyContin (oxycodone), were originally easy to abuse by crushing the pills for snorting or injection. This practice among abusers was one of the leading causes for the subsequent heroin scourge that resulted from tighter restrictions on prescription narcotic prescribing practices, as well as drug re-formulations. While, developing prescription drugs that are [...]

Abuse-Deterrent OxyContin Only Somewhat Effective2015-03-12T14:58:06-07:00

Health Plans Offer Unequal Mental Health Benefits


The Affordable Care Act was designed to provide health insurance for anyone who needs it, regardless of pre-existing conditions. While that has become the case for millions of American’s previously uninsured, new research suggests that one-fourth of health plans sold on health insurance exchanges appear to offer unequal benefits for mental and physical illnesses, despite a federal “parity” law mandating equal benefits for general medical treatments and mental health care, USA Today reports. At the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public [...]

Health Plans Offer Unequal Mental Health Benefits2015-03-10T13:43:11-07:00

Changing the Legal Age to Buy Cigarettes


Changing the legal age to buy vices such as alcohol and cigarettes is not an easy task. Currently, in the United States the legal age to buy alcohol is 21 and 18 for cigarettes, although there are some exceptions for cigarettes. It took a long time for every state to get on board with setting age limits, as witnessed by the fact that a number of states only agreed to get on board after the federal government threatened to cut funding [...]

Changing the Legal Age to Buy Cigarettes2015-03-05T13:01:38-08:00

Prescription Drug Monitoring Programs Use by Doctors


It is probably fair to say that doctors in the United States have witnessed to the full extent the prescription opioid epidemic facing Americans. Doctors prescribe the powerful narcotics and then are required to treat those who become dependent. Unfortunately, while more doctors are becoming versed in the field of addiction medicine, new research indicates that many doctors are not taking advantage of the resources available for helping curb the opioid problem. Researchers at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, [...]

Prescription Drug Monitoring Programs Use by Doctors2015-03-03T14:32:45-08:00