Over the weekend, Americans observed the eighth annual "National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day," an initiative to educate citizens about the potential abuse of medications that may be found around the home. Residents are being encouraged to make the one-day drive an everyday occurrence.
The nation’s governors held their annual winter meeting Friday through Monday in Washington. A panel on C-SPAN featured a discussion on states’ efforts to combat prescription drug abuse, an issue that took the national stage when Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin devoted January’s state of the state address to the problem.
6:30 Friday morning, search-warrant in hand, the Troy Police Emergency Response Team entered 314 8th Street as part of a robbery investigation. They found 1.2 kilos of cocaine, pure powder cocaine, along with two pancakes of crack cocaine. Some of the drugs were packaged for sale. Arrests in the case are pending. Police say the total street value of the drugs exceeds $120,000.
Patient advocates and representatives of the medical community in Massachusetts are submitting comments to the state Board of Public Health to address regulations that aim to curb prescription drug abuse.
Signed into law by Governor Deval Patrick in 2012, An Act relative to prescription drug diversion, abuse and addiction, requires prescribers of pain killers to enroll in the state’s now-voluntary Prescription Monitoring Program upon renewal of their medical licenses. Currently about 1,700 prescribers in Massachusetts are enrolled in the program.
A Massachusetts legislator in Berkshire County is sponsoring a bill that would require health insurers in the state to allow victims of substance abuse greater access to recovery treatment.
4th Berkshire District Representative William “Smitty” Pignatelli, a democrat, is one of four co-sponsors of the so-called healthcare parity bill. The legislation would require health insurance providers in Massachusetts to pay for the continuing treatment of individuals recovering from substance abuse.
Some stories are disturbing while others are inspiring, as they provide an honest and critical look at the current state of the addiction treatment industry in the U.S., contrasting what goes on in rehab with what experts and scientific studies suggest should go on.
Host Alan Chartock is joined by Nancy D. Campbell, Professor in the Department of Science and Technology Studies and Associate Dean for Graduate Studies and Research at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Campbell, who earned a PhD in the History of Consciousness program at UC Santa Cruz, did her master’s in English at the University of Washington and a bachelor’s in English at Bucknell. She has researched and published on topics such as drug addiction, bioethics, public health and drug policy, and feminist and postcolonial science and technology studies.