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Thursday, December 6, 2018

Opioid Addiction Epidemic Fight Receives Funding

Opioid overdose deaths are on the rise and the average life expectancy in America is dropping. The dark findings, courtesy of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), are a troubling cause for concern. While many factors play a part in the life expectancy decline, overdose deaths and so-called “deaths of despair” in the form of suicide stand out most notably.

Over the last few years, public health agencies have brought stark data to the attention of Americans. Campaigns are underway to get people talking about what happens when mental illness lives in the dark and individuals do not acquire the assistance they desperately require. The consensus among agencies like the National Institutes of Health and the CDC is that stigma continues to prevent millions of men and women from seeking help. Experts believe that having honest discussions about mental diseases like addiction and depression can save lives.

While talking amongst each other is beneficial for stigma-busting, we cannot forget that even when people desire assistance, it is often a struggle to obtain. Several congressional bills have sought to increase access to addiction treatment, expand the availability of the life-saving drug naloxone, and make more significant investments into prescription drug monitoring systems. The above actions have had some promising results; but, we still have a long way to go, and funding shortfalls continue to impede efforts to end the American opioid addiction epidemic plaguing millions.


Funding the Fight to End the Nation’s Opioid Epidemic

“We are experiencing a national crisis: For the first time since World War I, life expectancy in the U.S. has declined over the past three years—and opioids are a big reason why,” said Michael R. Bloomberg, Bloomberg Philanthropies Founder and WHO Global Ambassador for Noncommunicable Diseases. “We cannot sit by and allow this alarming trend to continue—not when so many Americans are being killed in what should be the prime of their lives.”

Michael Bloomberg made the above statement just before his charity announced a $50 million donation to look into the catalysts of opioid addiction and support substance use prevention and treatment programs, PBS NewsHour reports. The funds will be directed to the ten states hardest hit by the scourge of opioid use over the next three years.

A Bloomberg Philanthropies press release reveals that Pennsylvania is at the top of the list of states to receive financial aid. The organization has pledged at least $10 million to curb opioid deaths across The Keystone State. The findings of the three-year initiative will hopefully serve as a guide for others states to follow. Bloomberg’s charity is partnering with the CDC, The Pew Charitable Trusts, Johns Hopkins University, and Vital Strategies to find, “novel approaches and gaps in current treatment and prevention programs.”

“Communities across the country are taking innovative steps to address the opioid epidemic. Evaluating the efficacy of these approaches will help us determine which ones should be scaled up and implemented across the board,” said Ellen J. MacKenzie, Ph.D., MSc, Bloomberg Distinguished Professor and Dean of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.


Opioid Addiction Treatment

Opioid use disorder is a mental health condition devastating the lives of millions of Americans. Substance use disorder, left untreated, can result in premature death; it is vital that Americans living with addiction seek treatment immediately. Recovery is possible, and The Haven can aid you in breaking the cycle of self-defeating and self-destructive behaviors, and help you renew to your best today. Please contact us to learn more about our residential treatment center on the Central Coast of California.