With nearly 3,200 unintentional poisoning deaths in Oklahoma, it’s time for Oklahoma to face the issue of prescription drug abuse.
Of the deaths in Oklahoma, 81 percent of the deaths involved a prescription drug abuse. Ninety percent involved painkiller opioids. Our state leadership has called prescription drug abuse a “top public health priority,” but what is being done to address this issue?
In 2012, a group called the Prescription Drug Planning Workgroup worked on a five-year plan to help reduce the abuse of prescription painkillers while still being able to provide them to those in need.
The plan also calls for greater public awareness and educating both youth and parents and health-care providers about prescription drug abuse.
I think something needs to be done, but sometimes even the best-laid plans do little to actually fix the problem.
Still, when talking about prescription drug abuse, the plan has some good points, like:
However, in order to reduce the deaths due prescription drug abuse, we need to do more than make plans and talk about it.
Everyone who has a stake in the health of Oklahoma has to take the plan seriously and work to make it a reality.
One in 12 Oklahomans reportedly abuse painkillers. Of the top five medications responsible for overdoses, four are painkillers.
We can change this, Oklahoma.
If you need help in dealing with an accidental death or related issue, call us today at (405) 703-4567.