White House proposes new funding for addiction

President Obama will seek an extra $1.1 billion to pay for drug treatment for people addicted to opioid medications and heroin, which the White House says kills more people than automobile crashes, officials said Tuesday.

The extra money will be included in the upcoming fiscal year 2017 budget request.  Prescription opiods – which are painkillers – and heroin are closely linked. Health care providers wrote 259 million prescriptions for painkillers in 2012, enough to give every American adult a bottle of pills, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

 

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Obituaries Shed Euphemisms to Chronicle Toll of Heroin

When George P. Gauthier died of an opiate overdose in May at 44, his sister, Cindy Gauthier-Rivera, wrote an obituary that was more like a cry from the heart.

His destructive addictions to heroin, painkillers and alcohol had cost him his marriage, his children, his job and eventually his life, she wrote from her home here in western Massachusetts. An outgoing man who dressed well and loved music and poetry, he had wanted to become a drug counselor, saving others from the abyss. Instead, he plunged further into it; he was found dead at their mother’s house, just a few miles from his sister.

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A Different Path to Fighting Addiction

When their son had to take a medical leave from college, Jack and Wendy knew they — and he — needed help with his binge drinking. Their son’s psychiatrist, along with a few friends, suggested Alcoholics Anonymous. He had a disease, and in order to stay alive, he’d have to attend A.A. meetings and abstain from alcohol for the rest of his life, they said.

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Prescription Drugs Have Pushed Heroin Into the Suburbs

When clean-cut TV heartthrob Cory Monteith was found dead in his Vancouver, Canada, hotel room last summer, it was like being hit with a bucket of ice water for his fans. An autopsy found that Monteith, of Glee fame, had a toxic combination of heroin and alcohol coursing through his body. Suddenly, a hidden nationwide epidemic was front-page news.

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Chiara de Blasio Tells Her Story

For many, the holiday season is a time for joy. But it’s also a time when many of those battling depression and substance abuse find their struggle most difficult. In the hopes of helping others, Chiara de Blasio wants to share her personal story.

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Addiction Treatment With a Dark Side

For Shawn Schneider, a carpenter and rock musician, the descent into addiction began one Wisconsin winter with a fall from a rooftop construction site onto the frozen ground below. As the potent pain pills prescribed for his injuries became his obsessive focus, he lost everything: his band, his job, his wife, his will to live.

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