Opiate Addiction

I didn't know that the current opiate crisis is actually the third such epidemic in our nation’s history. Nor did I know that genetic factors account for between 40 to 60 percent of a person’s vulnerability to addiction - or that Fentanyl and Carfentanyl are making heroin use more dangerous.

A Drug Free School Zone sign on a chain link fence with a playground in the background.
duckycards / iStock

As the state continues to battle the opioid abuse crisis, ways of fighting it have taken many different forms — including focusing on drug prevention strategies in our schools.

On this Vermont Edition, we look around the state to learn what's being done to deliver that anti-drug message to our kids and also look at the effectiveness of these efforts.

Schubart: Depression

Feb 12, 2018

Seventy per cent of all Americans are taking some form of prescription medication, and ten per cent of them are on anti-depressants. Among women between 40 and 50, the number is twenty-five percent. In fact, antidepressant use has quadrupled in just the last thirty years.

Prescription Drug Takeback Day
Fuse / Thinkstock

The stories of America's opioid crisis are sadly familiar: stories of addiction, overdose, and suffering. But what role do insurance companies play in this struggle? 

In the wake of an investigative report by The Washington Post and "60 Minutes," Rep. Peter Welch is calling for congressional investigations into the effects of legislation he co-sponsored in 2015.

Colin Benjamin, director of the Office of Professional Regulation, says an overhaul of rules governing alcohol and drug counselors will increase the supply of addiction-treatment specialists in Vermont.
Peter Hirschfeld / VPR

As substance abuse treatment agencies struggle to find qualified workers, state officials are trying to make it easier to become an alcohol and drug counselor in Vermont.

New Hampshire politicians on both sides of the aisle were quick to condemn comments President Trump reportedly made during a conversation with the President of Mexico earlier this year about the Granite State’s opioid epidemic.

Governor Phil Scott has said that Vermont can turn the tide on the state's opioid abuse problem through enhanced treatment, better prevention and stricter enforcement.
BackyardProduction / iStock

The country's "drug czar" Richard Baum visited Vermont this week, just a few days after Brattleboro reported a dozen opioid overdoses. As the state's problem with drug addiction continues, we get an update on the efforts to battle opioid abuse.