Families often don’t know where to get help for addictions that killed 130 people a day in 2017. Two groups hoping to change that are piloting a national certification program. News on the national drug epidemic looks at recovery high schools and the “death certificate program,” as well.
Fact is, more than a decade into a nationwide epidemic, many physicians in the United States may not know where to send people with an opioid addiction. So the addiction that killed more than 130 people a day in 2017 has families turning to the only people who they think know what to do: Each other. (DeMio, 1/23)
It’s the last class period of the day. The students lean back on couches and take turns describing the most important day of their lives: the day they became sober. For Marques Martinez, that date was Nov. 15, 2016. Until then, he had used OxyContin, Xanax and nearly every other drug he could get his hands on, he said. He had been suspended from school for selling drugs. “I knew what I was doing was bad,” he said. “But I didn’t think there was another way.” (Gorman, 1/24)
On “All Things Considered” Thursday, KQED’s April Dembosky reports on the California medical board’s Death Certificate Project, which collected almost 3,000 death certificates of people who died of opioid overdoses, then cross-referenced those with the state’s drug prescription database. The board then sent letters to more than 500 doctors throughout the state who had prescribed the drugs to the people who died. The board has filed formal charges against 25 doctors, and left hundreds more, like Dr. Ako Jacintho of San Francisco, waiting to learn their fate. (Dembosky, 1/23)
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