Painkiller Epidemic Update: “You’ve Got Drugs!”

A new white paper released by Columbia University’s CASA (The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse) reveals that the vast majority of Websites selling narcotic painkillers (OxyContin, Vicodin, etc.) do so without requiring a prescription.

While this does not surprise me, it is somewhat startling to see it printed in black and white by a major research university. What I’ve been calling the Painkiller Epidemic is essentially a rising tide of patients developing powerful addictions to prescribed opiate-based painkillers. Like it or not, these illegal web merchants are simply responding to a very real surge in demand.

If the failed “War on Drugs” has taught us anything, we should know that shutting down these Websites will not fix the problem. Fundamental changes in the way narcotic painkillers are used and prescribed are needed to combat this problem in the future. As for the present, the needs of these addicts will be addressed one way or another—either through treatment, or through the criminal—and often violent—machinations of the black market.

It’s up to us to choose.

_

CASA’s Website: www.casacolumbia.org

Download the CASA White Paper: “You’ve Got Drugs!” V: Prescription Drug Pushers on the Internet


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One Response to “Painkiller Epidemic Update: “You’ve Got Drugs!””

  1. kayakotto Says:

    I agree that the main attention on all this should be treatment for those suffering from abuse and addiction from painkillers. I try to avoid the politics of drugs whenever possible. Along this line there is a good little booklet available for free at http://www.stopaddiction.com. It is called “Guide to Addiction Recovery for a Lifetime”. It is a good introduction to the subject.

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