Seattle is moving ahead with plans to open the nation’s first supervised heroin-injection clinics, the Los Angeles Times reports. The government-supported clinics would allow people addicted to heroin to legally use the drug while being monitored by medical personnel.
The Obama Administration on Monday announced the launch of Prescription Opioid and Heroin Epidemic Awareness Week. The administration is unveiling a series of new initiatives to fight the epidemic, and is calling on Congress to provide $1.1 billion for the effort.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is reporting a 426 percent increase in seized drugs that tested positive for fentanyl between 2013 and 2014, according to NPR. The number of deaths involving fentanyl and other synthetic opioids increased 79 percent during that period.
The number of deaths in the United States involving heroin more than tripled between 2010 and 2014, according to a new report by the Drug Enforcement Administration. The number of people reporting current heroin use nearly tripled between 2007 and 2014, the agency said.
An estimated one million people used heroin in the United States in 2014, almost triple the 2003 rate, according to a new report by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. Heroin-related deaths have increased five-fold since 2000, the World Drug Report 2016 found.
The head of a Canadian clinic that provides legally prescribed heroin to people addicted to the drug told U.S. senators this week the strategy can reduce the risk of serious illness and premature death, while reducing drug-related crime.
The Food and Drug Administration issued a warning Tuesday that taking higher-than-recommended doses of the over-the-counter diarrhea drug loperamide (Imodium) can cause serious heart problems that can lead to death. There have been a growing number of reports of people using the drug to manage their opioid addiction or to get high.
A group of senators is urging the Department of Health and Human Services to raise the number of patients a doctor can treat with the opioid addiction medication buprenorphine to 500, The Huffington Post reports.
U.S. Senator Rob Portman of Ohio is focusing on the heroin epidemic in his re-election campaign, USA Today reports. His campaign is releasing three ads on Wednesday that highlight the Republican senator’s work on the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act.
Doctors in Philadelphia are reporting cases of heroin overdoses they suspect involve the synthetic opioid W-18. The drug, which can be added to heroin without the user’s knowledge, may be too strong for the overdose antidote naloxone to reverse, according to The Philadelphia Inquirer.