The California Legislature recently enacted Senate Concurrent Resolution 115 which designates September 2022 as Opioid, Heroin, Fentanyl and Prescription Drug Abuse Awareness Month. This is intended to raise awareness of the extreme danger to human life the abuse of these medications poses.
Some key points of this resolution include:
1. Opioids are drugs that reduce pain by acting on the nervous system. Some interesting statistics on these drugs are as follows: In 2020, over 14.8 million opioid prescriptions were written in California; Sadly, in the last 20 years, over 500,000 people have died from opioid overdoses in the U.S.
2. Drug overdoses kill more people in one year than all motor vehicle fatalities in the U.S. combined. In five years, the number of opioid deaths in California increased by 2,100%!
3. Overdoses attributed to opioids killed almost 4,000 Californians in 2020, with 3,946 of those deaths attributed to Fentanyl. Fentanyl is an extremely powerful and addictive drug which is 50 times more potent than heroin and 100 times stronger than morphine.
4. Total yearly costs for prescription opioid overdose, abuse and dependence/treatment are estimated at $1.02 trillion nationally in 2017, up from $78.5 billion in 2013.
5. Abuse of opioids is the strongest risk factor for heroin abuse. 75% of new heroin users report first being addicted to a lawfully prescribed opioid.
6. Most opioid addicts cannot taper off (or titrate) the drug, or use less over time, without professional help.
Needless to say, the damage and loss off life opioids present is extremely real and a very deadly threat to society as a whole.
We strongly encourage anyone experiencing pain to try to avoid opioids at all costs and only use them under the strict guidance and supervision of an experienced physician.
If you have any concerns regarding opioids as they relate to your professional license, practice, or if you are facing a criminal case involving them, contact our attorneys today for a free consultation. With our vast experience, we can almost certainly help you with any legal situation you may be up against. Call us today and let us help you as we’ve helped so many others.
This blog is meant to provide information on current news and general information. It is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor is any attorney-client relationship established by its posting on this website. If you are facing a situation that involves your professional license, consult with a licensed attorney.