News About Addiction, Recovery and Advocacy

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The opioid epidemic in our community is frightening. While our politicians, law enforcement, judicial system and medical community search for an answer, ROCovery FITness is doing something about it. ROCovery, one of our members of the Assocation of Recovery Community Organizations (ARCO), is providing fitness programming and community support for those in recovery. It’s making a real difference, read about ROCovery inside new edition of the Healthy Edge magazine.

In recovery from drug addiction himself, Arafat, 25, said he understands why someone who uses drugs would be more comfortable talking to him than to a medical professional. “My job is to open myself up and be like a toolbox for them,” he said.

The opioid addiction epidemic is one of America’s foremost health crises. According to the most recent statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), opioids (including prescription opioids and heroin) kill more than 33,000 people annually, which is more than any year on record and more than at the peak of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) epidemic.1 Opioid abuse/overdose is considered a leading cause of shortened life expectancy in the U.S.2

The nation’s opioid epidemic reflects a complex set of circumstances. The pattern of opioid prescribing—including dose and duration-—and the patient’s risk factors of age, gender and condition are major determinants of whether a patient becomes dependent.3 As cases of opioid use disorder skyrocket among the commercially insured, this data shed new light on the specific prescribing practices and use that pose a significant threat to patient health.

Mr. Carbo, Red Sox sports legend, has devoted his life for the past 23 years to spreading his recovery message that a relationship with Jesus Christ is responsible for his clean and sober life. Speaking with the Times before his presentation, Mr. Carbo said audiences “come to see the ballplayer, but they leave with the message.” He offered hard-won lessons to substance abusers and their families.

Barriers to insurance coverage for substance-use disorder treatment remain, in part because they are hard to identify—for both consumers and regulators, according to a recent analysis of seven major health plans offered in 2015 and 2016 in New York and Maryland.

Medication-assisted treatment is often called the gold standard of addiction care. But much of the country has resisted it.

The opioid epidemic has crippled communities across the United States, spurred a public health crisis, and is responsible for nearly 100 overdose deaths each day.

There are so many tragic stories. Though Carrie Fisher’s death occurred in late December 2016, findings about her death were only recently released. Our Princess Leia could conquer the evil forces from other worlds, but apparently Carrie could not conquer the evil force that was apparently with her. Her mother died of a severe stroke the following day. Double tragedy. Yoda said, “The fear of loss is a path to the Dark Side.” Obi Wan Kenobi most surely shed a tear.

Medicaid currently covers 3 in 10 people with an opioid addiction, and faces a proposed $830 billion cut. The new health care bill would, as written, be “a death sentence for millions of Americans,” said one treatment advocate.

"I am so proud to be here to see where it all started."

Beginning with those words, the acting director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy not only paid tribute to the Gloucester-based Police Assisted Addiction Recovery Initiative for its successes in getting heroin and other opioid addicts into treatment and recovery programs, but hailed the message that PAARI and the Gloucester Police-based Angel Initiative has delivered to the health care industry.