Spikes In Heroin Use Necessitate Distribution of Overdose Kits

Dilated_pupil.gkAs local areas throughout the country attempt to address the rampant outbreak of heroin addiction and prescription pill abuse much of the focus has been on opiate rehab. Getting those currently using into treatment programs is the best route to preserving the safety of so many of people. Still, the scourge of heroin and the overdoses that occur from the drug are of particular concern as well.

Some local organizations and activists from coast to coast are placing emphasis on distributing overdose reversal kits around their communities. The kits include Naloxone, a drug used to reverse heroin overdoses generally admitted by EMTs. In some communities there already a shortage of these kits among emergency responders. Maryland recently made moves to have these kids given to law enforcement officials in their communities. The kits are vital at reducing the rise in fatalities that comes along with increased heroin usage but in the end recovery is the only way to save lives for the long term.

Following an overdose there is often a new found resolve to get clean. Our staff can help find the opiate rehab programs that will work. Call us for yourself or someone you love today, (888)519-1570!

Public Acknowledgements of Alcoholism and Alcohol Recovery Programs

Alcoholism Treatment ProgramsIt seems to happen on an almost weekly basis. We, the public, are exposed to a heartfelt confession from some star or former star acknowledging his or her alcoholism. Another public figure discusses losing a family member or loved one to the disease. For some it can seem like tabloid fodder and exploitation but to others it is an acknowledgment that they are not alone. Getting people into alcoholism treatment programs is difficult work, often because people fear the stigma attached to such efforts. The more out in the open we can be about these issues the better chance people have of addressing these issues.

So when I see articles like Representative Paul Ryan opening up about losing his alcoholic father or child actor Alison Porter(best known for the 1991 movie Curly Sue), I think that if it allows even a handful of people to address their demons it is a good thing. These days finding an alcohol recovery program is easy but folks need to first understand that they have a problem. Even the most functional of alcoholics could benefit from facing the issue head on. As they hear of successful people coping with the disease and its fallout it becomes a lot easier to see what they may be. That understanding can start the long march towards healing.

Virginia Takes Steps to Better Manage Opiates

Opiate RehabBetween 2011 and 2013 fatal heroin overdoses increased 163 percent in Northern Virginia. It was just one particularly frightening example of rapidly expanding heroin use throughout the country. With that disheartening statistic it is no wonder that politicians in Virginia would be looking for ways to address the newly resurgent scourge. At a Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police conference this week Virginia’s Attorney General Mark R. Herring was making a variety of proposed new laws and strategies.

One of the most popular proposals was a “Good Samaritan” law that would protect those who report an overdose from being prosecuted for drug use at the scene. There were also laws proposed to make it easier to put dealers behind bars when their product is ruled the cause of death in an overdose. Herring’s proposals went even deeper, adding warnings about prescription drugs and heroin to school drug education programs and reprioritizing local law enforcement to go after doctors over-prescribing painkillers.

An area some saw the current plan as lacking is effectively advocating for opiate rehab and getting treatment to addicts ready to address their issues. That said, smarter handling of these legal issues is always welcome and much of what seems likely to be implemented seems likely to help. Addiction treatment is available from a variety of sources and we can help those looking for help make sense of what might work for them.

The increase in opiate abuse nationally stems from the wider than ever availability of opiate prescription pain medication. The pills get users hooked and when they become prohibitively expensive users often turn to inexpensive heroin flooding the streets of communities nationwide.

Differing Views Remain with Regard to Forced Addiction Treatment

New York Addiction TreatmentLaws around drug addiction have been changing around the country as attitudes around addiction evolve. With opiate addiction on the rise and prescription pills leading many towards the dark path of full blown heroin addiction local governments around the country are beginning to take an active role in addressing this scourge. Part of that is funding and promoting opiate rehab programs but there are also more proactive measures being considered. Of course as with so many hot button political issues these changes are often greeted with controversy and healthy debate.

One such measure is the 1993 Marchman Act. Passed in Florida during in the midst of a resurgent heroin culture and at the tail end of the 1980’s(which some refer to as the “Crack Era”)  the law allows concerned parties to have people who demonstrate a lack of control regarding substance abuse picked up by authorities. Once in custody the person can be held for several days of assessment and detox. After that point a judge can force the person into addiction treatment programs for as long as 60 days.

In, for example, New York addiction treatment can only be forced on someone when they have been arrested for committing a crime and put through a trial. The Florida law remains controversial and some argue that these kinds of aggressive intervention services are not as effective. It does suggest that there is more that can be done.