Drug Abuse Policy Cuts Cost

Atlanta 5/04/2010 07:25 AM GMT (TransWorldNews)

Newsweek is reporting that they have received a draft of the soon to be released National Drug Control Policy.  The draft lays out many of the main points which will make it into the final document.  One new provision in the document is a plan to seek early intervention opportunities in health care.

Only a fraction of the money spent on health-related drug abuse costs is spent on identifying and intervening early in emerging cases of drug abuse or treating those with the disease of addiction. Most of the money is instead spent on the rehabilitation of severe injuries resulting from the drug abuse. Abuse of drugs and alcohol are factors in many car crashes, home accidents, fires, and violent assaults.

Enormous sums are also spent treating the infectious illnesses (e.g., HIV/AIDS, hepatitis B and C) for which drug users are at high risk. Undetected substance abuse complicates the treatment of other illnesses, leading to misdiagnosis, poor adherence to medical advice, and untoward interactions with prescribed medications.

Some of the main points involving these opportunities are;

1)     Increasing screening and early intervention for substance use in all health care settings

2)     Increasing health care providers’ knowledge of screening and brief intervention techniques through medical schools and continuing education programs

3)     Curbing prescription drug abuse by expanding prescription drug monitoring programs, encouraging community prescription take-back initiatives, informing the public of the risks of prescription drug abuse and overdose, recommending disposal methods to remove unused medications from the home, and working with physicians to achieve consensus standards on opiate painkiller prescribing

4)    Expansion of reimbursement for screening and brief interventions in primary care

Developing an approach to prevent more of these accidents and thus reducing overall cost is definitely a good approach to handling the problem of drug addiction.

Narconon of Georgia provides drug education and treatment which effectively handles many of the problems.  The cost of drug treatment is small compared to the possible catastrophic health problems faced by those who do not receive this treatment.



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