Author: Sanford M. Silverman
Prescription drug abuse is the fastest growing problem in the US. According to the Center for Disease Control (cdc) enough opioid pain relievers were sold in 2010 "to medicate every adult in the United States with the equivalent of a typical dose of 5 mg of hydrocodone every 4 hours for 1 month." In 2011 there were 41,340 deaths from prescription drug poisonings, over 17,000 involving opioids. Prescription drug overdose was the leading cause of injury death in 2012. Among people 25 to 60 years old, prescription drug overdose caused more deaths than motor vehicle traffic crashes. The drug overdose death rate has more than doubled from 1999 through 2013.
Diversion is defined as the intentional removal of a medication from legitimate and dispensing channels. It is common among prescription drugs, where approximately 53% were obtained from a friend or relative, and 83.6% of those were from a single physician source.
Posted on September 28, 2017