American Morning

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May 11th, 2010
11:02 AM ET

Fighting America's prescription drug abuse

(CNN) – In our special series, "Addicted," we brought you Melissa's story. Like many kids her age, she experimented with drugs. Not what you'd typically think – street drugs – but prescription pills right out of her family medicine cabinet.

Stories like hers happen every day and the problem is growing. The latest government figures show abuse of some of the strongest types of prescription painkillers is up 400 percent over the decade. Deaths from these drugs are up 160 percent over just five years.

Today, the White House is launching a new drug strategy focusing on prevention and treatment. It also gives real attention to prescription drug abuse. The director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, Gil Kerlikowske, joined us on Tuesday's American Morning.

Filed under: Addicted... • Drugs
soundoff (2 Responses)
  1. ej

    good prevention practice would discourage showing how drugs are used. please consider omitting things that may give youth ideas of how to experiment.

    May 12, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  2. Jim

    Again something the government will mess up!!! i take prescription pain killers for a brain tumor and in the last year. With all the stories i have had trouble getting my prescriptions filled. Many pharmacys rather say they dont have the medication than be bothered with the risks now.
    Also my insurance company is making me get my medications in 90 day supplies. Which is alot of pills for any one person. would you go to the store and buy 4 bottles of any over the counter medicine at once. NO!
    But unless i have the doctor write the prescription for 90 days i pay triple the price. To end i live in florida one of the worse states dealing with prescription drug abuse. I also work in health care. I fear as i am seeing that people with the need will not be able to get the medications. i am already seeing this to small degree. I had to call 10 pharmacies. in the end i gave up and told my insurance co. who now makes me go to one particalar pharmacy. Instead of the one i have been with for 10 years. i called them to find me a place to fill my prescriptions and they did. This WILL make it harder for people who really need there medication and get it leagally and dont abuse it to get the medication. It as already begun! One last note one should not be behind the wheel of a car while on cetain medications. However
    if you file for disabilty they still expect you to get to work. They do not consider the affects of your medication in determining a disabilty case!

    May 11, 2010 at 4:32 pm |