It doesn’t take a genius to solve the opioid crisis
America’s current system of coercive, demanding and often demeaning care itself creates resistance to treatment. When people see getting help as well, helpful, they seek it, because—believe it or not—active addiction isn’t fun.
Marijuana legalization can also help: Nearly a dozen studies now show that medical marijuana is associated with a reduction in use of opioids for both pain and for addiction, as well as a reduction in overdose deaths. The government should also leave other, less harmful substitutes like Kratom alone. Of course, cheap naloxone needs to be more available to reverse overdoses, safe injection facilities should be approved, drug checking to determine if fentanyl is present should be accessible—all of this needs to be done, too. But the strategy most likely to save the most lives most quickly is to rapidly expand maintenance and stop pushing people out of medical care, even if they misuse drugs. And, in the long term, we have to decriminalize possession of all drugs and shift the money spent locking people in cages and increasing their risk of overdose death over to providing compassionate, evidence-based treatment.
Original Article (Vice Magazine):
It Doesn’t Take a Genius to Solve the Opioid Crisis
Artwork Fair Use: Andrew Nealon + EncMstr