Va. Task Force Recommends Ways To Combat Growing Heroin And Rx Drug Abuse Problems
Meanwhile, fatal heroin overdoses are on the rise in the Seattle area.
The Washington Post:
Heroin And Prescription Drug Abuse Attract Attention In Virginia
Virginia should improve medical and police training, increase public education and expand drug courts to help combat heroin and prescription drug abuse, according to a task force formed by Gov. Terry McAuliffe. The recommendations are part of a report that experts in health care and law enforcement approved Tuesday and plan to send to McAuliffe (D) this month to begin to address what he called a problem of “epidemic proportions.” (Portnoy, 6/17)
The Seattle Times:
Heroin Deaths Spike Nearly 60 Percent In Seattle Area
Fatal overdoses linked to heroin surged by 58 percent in King County last year, fueling the steepest rise in local drug-caused deaths in 17 years. Heroin was involved in 156 deaths in the region in 2014, up from 99 the year before — and just 49 in 2009. Overall, there were 314 drug deaths in the area last year, the highest number since 1997, according to a report released Thursday by the University of Washington Alcohol & Drug Abuse Institute. (Aleccia, 6/18)
In related news -
Narcan Is Helping Reduce Overdose Deaths In Hennepin County. Why Isn't It Used More Widely?
Remember that scene in "Pulp Fiction" when John Travolta saves Uma Thurman from a heroin overdose by plunging an adrenaline-filled hypodermic needle into her heart? In the movie Uma pops up and presumably goes on to enjoy many more years of barefooted dancing. But that could never happen in real life, right? Yes it can. Well something like that. More likely is a real-life Uma would be given Narcan, which is an opioid antagonist that can reverse the impact of an overdose within minutes. It works remarkably well. It’s just not available in that many places yet. But that's starting to change. (Wahlberg, 6/17)