“Most people who become addicted [to opioids] like me do so after a prescription for a painkiller following a medical procedure. Once the phenomenon of craving sets in, it is often too late." Jamie Lee Curtis (Actress), ABC News (July 25, 2017)
Date of Event: Tuesday, February 27th 2024
Time of Event: 9:30 AM — 1:00 PM PST
Place of Event: Webinar
The National Institute on Drug Abuse reported that 2020 was a prominent year for opioid usage among American communities. “Opioid-involved overdose deaths rose from 21,089 in 2010 to 47,600 in 2017 and remained steady through 2019. This was followed by a significant increase in 2020 with 68,630 reported deaths and again in 2021 with 80,411 reported overdose deaths.” (National Institute on Drug Abuse) According to the Centers for Disease and Prevention (CDC), most drug overdoses are caused by synthetic opioids. “Opioids – mainly synthetic opioids (other than methadone) – are currently the main driver of drug overdose deaths. Nearly 88% of opioid-involved overdose deaths involved synthetic opioids.” (Centers for Disease and Prevention CDC) What are opioids? “Opioids, a class of drugs derived from the opium poppy plant, can be divided into two broad categories: legally manufactured medications and illicit narcotics.” (Claire Klobucista and Alejandra Martinez, Council on Foreign Relations) Claire Klobucista and Alejandra Martinez from the Council on Foreign Relations noted that opioid use, particularly fentanyl, increased during the COVID-19 pandemic, calling this drug use an epidemic of its own. They also went into detail of who is more at risk of overusing these drugs, showing the demographics of this phenomenon: “The vast majority of those who overdose on opioids are non-Hispanic white Americans, who made up close to 70% of the annual total in 2020. Black Americans and Hispanic Americans accounted for about 17% to 12% of cases, respectively.” (Claire Klobucista and Alejandra Martinez, Council on Foreign Relations) The United States Department of Agriculture says that rural communities face many threats when it comes to drug and substance abuse, particularly opioids. The National Safety Council (NSC) also gives statistics as to the age groups that are most affected: “The 35 to 44 year age group is experiencing the most opioid overdose deaths – 20,137, a 20% increase from 2020, and a 73% increase since 2019. Currently, 71% of preventable opioid deaths occur among those ages 25 to 54, and the number of deaths among individuals 55 and older in growing rapidly. Few opioid deaths occur among children younger than 15.” (National Safety Council)
In September of 2022, the Biden-Harris Administration released new actions and funding to address the overdose epidemic and offer support recovery for victims of substance abuse. In this action statement, $1.5 billion was given to all states and territories to help them tackle this opioid crisis and support people that they have in recovery. In particular, $104 million was given to expand treatment options and prevention efforts in rural communities around the country. The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) says that policy should focus primarily on 4 key components, being primary prevention, harm reduction, evidence-based treatment, and lastly recovery support. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) says that the opioid crisis has been putting a strain on the nation’s overall budget, since more services are required. (The opioid crisis has affected spending and revenues in the federal budget. Federal spending on health care, the child welfare system, means-tested social programs, and efforts to reduce drug trafficking has increased.” (Congressional Budget Office)
The journal entitled Addiction Science & Clinical Practice wrote an article highlighting the gaps between the opioid crisis and policy, concluding that the quality of treatment is a big one because each individual is different, and therefore there is not a ‘one and done’ type of treatment, rather each person needs to be assessed individually and treated in the way that suits them best. Mental health was another big factor in addressing the gaps, because many people resort to opioid use to assuage their mental health issues, a big one being Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), particularly among soldiers. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) says that another gap is that of access to care. Many individuals living in rural communities don’t have access to care in close proximity to them, therefore expanding this issue. “To facilitate expansion of access to care, SAMHSA proposes to update OTP admission criteria… This includes removal of the one-year requirement for opioid addiction before admission to an OTP, in favor of considering a person’s problematic patterns of opioid use. In conjunction with updated standards that include extended take-home doses of methadone and access to telehealth, these changes are likely to expand access while also improving retention in treatment.” (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration)
This symposium seeks to address the drug and substance crisis that the nation faces, particularly how it pertains to opioids. By attending this seminar, individuals will be able to understand the causes and effects of opioid addiction across several communities in the United States, and the gaps that policy needs to address in order to improve the lives of millions and make communities stronger and healthier.
If you’re interested in promoting your company, products and/or services at our events, please click here to enter your details and we will contact you directly.
Alternatively, please call
+1 (310) 385 8750 for more information.