We're a decade into the "opioid crisis" and some people still cannot understand that prescription pain pills are, at worst, minor contributors. Yet the war against prescription analgesics goes on. This time it's Elizabeth Warren (and colleagues) who just don't get it. The Massachusetts Senator is pushing the DEA to allow partial refills of pills to reduce overdose deaths. What a ridiculous idea.
Is sticking your finger down your throat a pleasant experience? How about sticking it down there and leaving it for three weeks? You probably wouldn't want to be awake for that, but a shortage of IV hospital drugs is causing some real problems for intubated patients on ventilators. And guess what drug they're out of? Fentanyl(!). And if you read on you'll get that, plus a bubble bath with Kim Jong-un, all in one idiotic article.
Methamphetamine has made an unprecedented comeback, surpassing even fentanyl in drug overdose deaths in certain parts of the U.S. It hasn't shown up by accident; it's an offshoot of the misinformed anti-opioid movement. But it took two different government screwups to cause this latest mess: one that gave us pure, cheap meth and another that gave addicts the reason to use it. Nice going.
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Dr. Singh, ACSH friend and former Chief Medical Officer for the Office of the Assistant Secretary for HHS, published a paper on the adulterants found in street drugs. What was in there? A lot of junk.
Here is yet more evidence that fentanyl, rather than prescription drugs, is fueling the opioid crisis. It's time to add illegal drug cartels to the list of defendants.
The so-called War on Drugs, a spectacular failure by any measure, just got more complicated (and worse) because of vaping. New ACSH advisor Dr. Jeffrey Singer (pictured) argues that we are seeing a modern version of Prohibition decorated with vaping devices.
U.S. drug policies are just plain nuts. Pain patients can't get opioids because they're "bad." But your miniature poodle could walk into ... pretty much any store and waltz out with vaping solutions of CBD oil or maybe even THC because they're "good." But now fentanyl -- the real cause of most overdose deaths -- is showing up in vaping solutions. Can't make this up.
Not that we needed it, but there's now even more evidence that prescription analgesic opioids play a very small part in fatal overdoses that continue to plague America. How small? According to a new study published in Public Health Reports, let's just say: get out your magnifying glass.
The enormous Rand Corporation just issued a 265-page report discussing how and why fentanyl is plaguing the United States. Interesting stuff, but "itsy bitsy" ACSH was all over this years ago. See for yourself.
Fentanyl washed upon our shores several decades ago, as China White. Today, the fentanyl market has more of a Breaking Bad vibe. A thorough study by the Rand Corporation suggests that fentanyl is a whole quantum different from the opioid crisis narrative.
One of the core principles of ACSH is harm reduction – an essential component of any sane public health policy. Dr. Jeffrey Singer (pictured) writing for the Cato Institute, calls for harm reduction, both from opioid prescribers and policymakers. Dr. Singer graciously allowed us to reprint his latest essay, which is a must-read.