Copyright NEADCP 2018

 

June 27, 2018

MANCHESTER -- Poised, articulate and meticulously dressed, Jessica Caron was the picture of success.

But just 18 months ago, “I was addicted to heroin, living in my car.”

Caron is one of five people who graduated Tuesday from drug court at Hillsborough County (North) Superior Court. City leaders, providers, relatives and friends packed a courtroom to hear their stories and hail their achievements.

Gov. Hassan to sign bill Tuesday establishing drug courts statewide

June 13, 2016

MANCHESTER, N.H. —Another piece has been added to the puzzle to curb New Hampshire’s drug crisis: Drug courts are about to go statewide.

Summit draws 'bipartisan' support in fight against opioids

5/10/2016

MANCHESTER — At least one encouraging sign was clear from the start of a day-long summit on the opioid epidemic in New Hampshire. More than 800 people representing a wide range of fronts battling the health crisis packed in a large banquet room on Tuesday for the Governor’s Summit on Substance Misuse. Treatment and recovery specialists, law enforcement agencies and experts on addiction and ways to prevent it were among the groups taking part in the summit.

The public scorns the addiction treatment Prince was going to try. They shouldn’t.

5/9/2016

Prince’s greatest music hit the radio while I was going off the rails during my own opioid and cocaine addiction. The young man who gave me my first injection was a massive fan and played “Kiss” for me around the same time he introduced me to the needle. I was soon hooked on both Prince and injecting.

That’s why it hit me especially hard when I learned that this musical genius’ overdose death occurred a day before he was due to start treatment. This tragedy makes clear that what likely killed him, and is killing so many others, is not just addiction itself, but the stigma we attach to it and, even worse, to the most effective treatment for it.

Bangor city leaders developing plan for adult drug court

5/11/2016

BANGOR, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- A group of city leaders in Bangor is working on bringing the city's adult drug court back for the first time in four years.

Drug courts are different from regular courts. A judge meets regularly with an addict who normally would be charged with a crime and sent to jail but instead has to follow a mandated treatment plan.

Opioid Prescribing Gets Another Look as F.D.A. Revisits Mandatory Doctor Training

5/2/2016

A pain management specialist, Dr. Nathaniel Katz, was stunned in 2012 when the Food and Drug Administration rejected a recommendation from an expert panel that had urged mandatory training for doctors who prescribed powerful painkillers like OxyContin.

Gloucester police chief honored by White House for helping addicts instead of arresting them

4/23/2016

Almost a year ago, Chief Leonard Campanello published a Facebook post that has led to more than 400 addicts getting treatment.

 

Less than a year after announcing on Facebook that he would offer heroin addicts help instead of handcuffs, Gloucester Police Chief Leonard Campanello is being honored by the White House for that revolutionary change of thinking.

Participants in Massachusetts' drug courts are overwhelmingly white

4/21/2016

BOSTON — Walk the streets around Dorchester District Court, in a heavily minority neighborhood of Boston, and most faces are black.

Yet on a recent Thursday afternoon in drug court, Judge Serge Georges dispensed his weekly dose of encouragement and gentle criticism to two white men during their regular check-ins.

Lawmakers debate cost effectiveness of drug courts

4/20/2016

CONCORD — Several House budget writers Tuesday questioned where drug courts provide the biggest “bang for the buck” in the fight against opioid addiction.

The House Finance Committee is reviewing Senate Bill 464, which provides about $3 million to expand drug courts throughout the state.

House Finance Committee Chairman Neal Kurk, R-Weare, noted that drug courts do not provide the greatest return on spending compared to non-correctional treatment programs.

Hingham's new drug court another path to sobriety

3/3/2016

SCITUATE

Already home to various community coalitions and recovery networks, Plymouth County will soon have another way to help people struggling with substance abuse.

A drug court is set to open in Hingham District Court this spring, once a chief probation officer is appointed.

Lowell Drug Court turning lives around

2/24/2016

LOWELL -- Two years ago, Kailene McInnis was crying when she got off the phone with her grandmother to let her know she was in the state correctional facility in Framingham.

She faced a choice -- do jail time or go to Drug Court.

Drug courts uncertain in Merrimack County

1/29/2016

As lawmakers consider a proposal to fund drug courts across New Hampshire, one of the state’s most populous counties, Merrimack, still has yet to commit to the program – though preparations are under way here just the same.

Superior Court Chief Justice Tina Nadeau said a federal training grant was approved in December, and that Judge Diane Nicolosi of Merrimack County Superior Court has begun meeting with attorneys and other potential county stakeholders.

We must change the way we think about drug addiction in Maryland

2/6/2016

I’ve been an emergency room physician for more than 30 years. Every shift, I see broken legs, lacerations, cases of pneumonia and more. On the surface, none appears related to the rising rates of drug addiction and crime plaguing our society. But they are.

BU: The Addiction Puzzle

11/2013

Drug or alcohol addiction affects nearly 23 million Americans and costs the United States an estimated $428 billion each year. Modern science has dispelled many misconceptions about the disease and scientists are working hard to find effective treatments. At Boston University, more than 100 researchers have been awarded over $130 million in addiction-related research and services grants since 2006, and faculty currently direct over 50 funded addiction-related research projects.

Data show opioids’ deadly toll

1/21/2016

People 25 to 44 years old are hardest hit by the opioid overdose epidemic that has left thousands dead in Massachusetts, according to new data from the state Department of Public Health.

On Wednesday, the state released for the first time a demographic portrait of the still-growing health crisis, and that report found certain groups bear a disproportionate burden.

How to Fix Drug Courts

1/13/2016

Again and again on the campaign trail, the presidential candidates have been faced by America's rising concern about addiction, particularly to opioid painkillers and heroin. And from Hillary Clinton to Chris Christie, the politicians have responded by pledging their support for drug courts.

This bipartisan reaction is correct, in principle: Drug courts, which now exist in every state, can motivate people to overcome their substance-abuse problems more effectively than punishment can. But to make the courts work in practice, states need to see that they’re adequately funded and properly run.

GOP Candidates Call for End to Stigma Around Drug Addiction

1/5/2016

  • 8 Republican presidential hopefuls called for a more compassionate discussion around drug addiction Tuesday, with emphasis on substance abuse as a curable disease, not a moral failing.

Jeb Bush’s drug control proposal calls for ‘dedicated parents,’ better access to drug courts

1/5/2016

Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush is proposing a broad drug control policy that includes better access to drug courts, better parenting and tougher security along the U.S.-Mexico border.

Drug Court: Making a difference

1/4/2016

  Billy Bennett wasn’t really sold on the value of a program that would redirect drug-related offenders from jail into rehabilitation. After eight years of seeing dramatic changes in many lives, the 12th Judicial District judge is a believer.

Nixa lawmaker wants to add criminal penalties for drug use during pregnancy

1/2/2016

Mothers who use narcotics or other controlled substances during their pregnancies would face criminal penalties under a bill proposed by Rep. Jered Taylor, R-Nixa.

Under the proposed bill, it would be a misdemeanor to use drugs while pregnant, and if a child died as a result of the drug use, the mother could face a felony charge, according to the bill's language. Taylor pre-filed the bill last month for the 2016 legislative session that begins Wednesday.

Rodger McDaniel column: Drug courts work, but Mead couldn't care less

1/2/2015

The word "innovative" doesn't jump to mind when you say "Wyoming."

Now Gov. Matt Mead has decided to undo the state's drug court program, one of the few innovative achievements of the last two decades.

Middlesex County tops 2015 overdose list, excluding major cities

12/31/2015

According to data released in the final hours of 2015, Massachusetts State Police investigated more fatal suspected heroin overdoses in Middlesex County than any other in the state, excluding major cities.

Letter: Olmsted County drug court is better option than prison time

12/31/2015

Americans overwhelmingly agree the war on drugs has been a failure. The Federal Criminal Justice System acknowledges that most drug-crime punishment is neither equitable nor a deterrent, and that prison time is rarely rehabilitative. As a result, drug crime sentencing and alternative justice are being examined in Minnesota and elsewhere.

HBO heroin documentary looks at Cape Cod

12/25/2015

HBO

Cassie and others talk about their drug addiction in HBO’s “Heroin: Cape Cod USA.”

Richard Dohoney: Berkshire County needs a drug court

12/24/2015

PITTSFIELD >> Any questions about the severity of our drug problem in Berkshire County are sadly answered on both the front page and the obituary page of the Eagle. Headlines reporting decade-long sentences for heroin-related crimes seem daily and the "unexplained" deaths of young people are far too frequent.

Give medical residents access to drug database

12/20/2015

As part of his campaign against opioid abuse, Governor Charlie Baker has urged doctors,
dentists, and anyone else who can prescribe drugs to use the state’s Prescription Monitoring
Program. The database, run by the Executive Office of Health and Human Services, collects and
updates prescription information fed into it by Massachusetts hospitals, clinics, and pharmacies,
as well as by out-of-state mail order pharmacies that deliver to Massachusetts addresses. The
monitoring program can help physicians determine whether a patient has a history of obtaining
drugs from multiple sources — a practice known as “doctor shopping.” In an emergency room
setting, for instance, a busy doctor might have a difficult time determining whether a patient’s
pain is real or concocted — addicts quickly learn to become skilled at deception.

Chelsea Drug Court Program a Success:Justice Barnes Leads End-of-the- Year Meeting

12/18/2015

According to the National Association of Drug Court Professionals, 75 percent of Drug Court
graduates remain arrest-free for at least two years after leaving the program.
That’s a very good success rate and Tuesday’s special program led by Justice Benjamin Barnes
affirmed that the Chelsea Drug Court is working well and producing good results.

Boston University School of Medicine develops curriculum to combat opioid abuse

12/17/2015

Boston University School of Medicine announced Monday that its curriculum on opioids has
been expanded in response to Governor Charlie Baker’s efforts to combat opioid addiction.
The medical students are now being trained in addiction prevention, screening, and treatment.

Gov. Baker Hosts Screening Of HBO Film Set On Cape Cod About Nation’s Opioid Crisis

15/2/14/2015

BOSTON Cape Cod is the setting of a new documentary about the nation’s growing opioid
problem that airs on HBO later this month.
And as he campaigns for new measures to deal with the state’s opioid epidemic, Gov. Charlie
Baker invited lawmakers and others involved in the issue to an early screening Tuesday night.

EDITORIAL: Lake County’s growing drug problem

12/14/2015

We were disheartened, but frankly not surprised, by the story last week that revealed a growing
problem in Lake County for drug-related crime.
Talking to those who live in the area had already convinced us that resident safety had greatly
diminished as drug use had increased, but seeing the cold, hard numbers really drove the point
home.

‘Status Quo Is Unacceptable,’ Baker Says As He Testifies On His Opioid Bill

12/12/2015

BOSTON As the state’s opioid epidemic shows no signs of slowing down, a Beacon Hill panel
listened Monday to hours of testimony on Gov. Charlie Baker’s bill seeking to stem the scourge.
Baker acknowledged his proposal disrupts the status quo.

Baker to use HBO opioid documentary to lobby for legislation

12/11/2015

Governor Charlie Baker, alarmed by the state’s rate of four opioid-related deaths per day, plans
to use a new film about the epidemic’s devastation on Cape Cod to lobby lawmakers mulling his
bill aimed at mitigating the problem.

Drug may give those leaving jail a better shot at recovery

12/9/2015

Authorities turn to Vivitrol to cut rates of addiction,
incarceration

Specialty courts cut costs, improve lives

12/6/2015

  • Chief Judge Geno Salomone presides over a regional DWI/Sobriety court in Taylor.
  • Chief Judge Laura Mack presides over a regional mental health court in Wayne.

Regionalism in government is a wonderful concept that is sometimes difficult to implement. Wayne County alone has 20 separate district courts and four municipal courts, each with its own judge or judges, funding source, court administrator and probation department. Many of these courts were created in times when government in general was expanding, not shrinking as it is now.

Medical schools to bolster opioid lessons

11/9/2015

The state’s four medical schools have agreed to incorporate into their curriculum instruction in the prevention and treatment of prescription drug misuse, as part of Governor Charlie Baker’s effort to combat opioid addiction.

New Framingham court seeks to keep veterans out of jail

11/9/2015

FRAMINGHAM – After their military service is done, some veterans are left with post-traumatic stress disorder or traumatic brain injuries that might lead to drug or alcohol abuse and, in some cases, crime.

Instead of sending them to jail, the new Middlesex County Veterans Treatment Court is working to keep these men and women out of jail and get them the help they need to be productive members of society.

This could be the cure for drug crisis in America's prisons

11/4/2015

Drug overdoses now cause more deaths than car crashes, with opioids like Oxycontin killing 44 people a day, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).  And treatment protocol for individuals addicted to opioids has largely been methodone, which has addictive qualities itself.

In Heroin Crisis, White Families Seek Gentler War on Drugs

10/30/2015

NEWTON, N.H. — When Courtney Griffin was using heroin, she lied, disappeared, and stole from her parents to support her $400-a-day habit. Her family paid her debts, never filed a police report and kept her addiction secret — until she was found dead last year of an overdose.

Drugs and Politics

10/30/2015

On the campaign trail, presidential candidates acknowledge the problem of America’s growing addiction to legal, prescription and illegal drugs, and discover the bipartisan appeal of drug

CDC Report: Massachusetts Had 2nd Highest Seizure Of Fentanyl In U.S.

10/27/2015

BOSTON The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say 80 percent of U.S. law enforcement seizures of the drug fentanyl last year were concentrated in 10 states. One of them is Massachusetts.

Baker would give hospitals the power to hold addicts

10/11/2015

Staring down a brutal opioid epidemic, Governor Baker wants to give hospitals authority to force treatment on substance abusers.

Treatment Is Good, Prevention Is Better: How Best To Keep Our Kids Off Drugs

10/2/2015

A pediatrician who directs an adolescent substance abuse program and a state senator join forces in support of a bill to screen and counsel 7th and 10th graders about the dangers of drug use and abuse. (Ryan Tauss/Unsplash)RichText.

Anti-drug leaders draw on experience

Sept 10, 2015

Tom Coderre was arrested for cocaine possession in Rhode Island. Michael Botticelli, driving drunk, once crashed into a disabled truck on a Massachusetts highway. Jonathan Goyer nearly died from a heroin overdose in Pawtucket, R.I. Paolo del Vecchio struggled with mental illness and drug use starting in childhood. Eduardo Vega attempted suicide.

These five men — now bearing such titles as “executive director,” “CEO,” and even “czar” — appeared at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., on Thursday to announce new survey results on drug use and mental illness among Americans.

Baltimore Fights Heroin Overdoses With Antidote Outreach

Sept 9, 2015

A suspected case of measles. A rabid fox on the loose. A recall of a dye used in tattoos. A drug epidemic that's claiming hundreds of lives.

Those are just a few of the problems that Dr. Leana Wen confronts in a typical week as the Baltimore City Health Commissioner. While they all have to be dealt with, it's clear that heroin is among Wen's gravest concerns. Right now, she's focused on stopping overdoses and saving lives.

AG’s opioid proposal targets fentanyl trafficking

Aug 17, 2015

Aiming to give law enforcement officials a new weapon to battle the opioid overdose crisis that has torn through Massachusetts, Attorney General Maura Healey on Monday proposed a law that would make trafficking in an extremely powerful narcotic a crime.

No Blame, No Shame: Treating Heroin Addiction As A Chronic Condition

Sept 9, 2015

BOSTON Ever heard of a diabetic patient who ate a large muffin before having a blood glucose test, was scolded for giving in to temptation, and then told to just say no to carbs?

How about a cardiac patient who has a worrisome stress test and is shown the door when she admits to eating a few Big Macs?

That kind of response is all too familiar for patients whose brains have been altered by heroin or other opiates.

In heroin fight, White House will push treatment

Aug 16, 2015

As heroin overdoses and deaths soar in many parts of the nation, the White House plans to announce Monday an initiative that will for the first time pair public health and law enforcement in an effort to shift the emphasis from punishment to the treatment of addicts.

Long waiting lists for drug treatment add to addicts’ desperation

July 26, 2015

PORTLAND, Maine — Shawn Cross thought heroin was making him an excellent manager at the auto parts store where he had gone from delivery guy to manager in five years. On the job, every day, every four hours, he snorted opiate pills or heroin.

Breaking good: Vivitrol, a new drug given as a monthly shot, is helping addicts stay clean

July 29, 2015

Troy Garver, who was addicted to prescription pain medication, went to prison for selling morphine pills in 2014. Now he's trying to rebuild his life. As a part of his recovery he takes monthly shots of Vivitrol, a drug that may revolutionize the treatment of opioid addiction. (Zoeann Murphy/The Washington Post)

Every Drug Court Should Allow Methadone Treatment

July 20, 2015

WHEN an old offense caught up with 28-year-old Robert Lepolszki last year, he had a full-time job and had kicked heroin. But Frank Gulotta Jr., the Nassau County judge assigned to his case, forced him to end the only treatment that had ever worked: methadone maintenance. Judge Gulotta said that methadone does not enable a defendant “to actually rid him or herself of the addiction.” Complete abstinence programs were the only treatments his court allowed. Not long after stopping the medication, Mr. Lepolszki was dead from an overdose..

Jail diversion programs expanding regionally

July 5, 2015

Katelyn Dehey looks perfectly at home in a police vehicle as she reminisces with Officer Jay Godino about calls they have responded to over the past year.

But Dehey, a civilian who grew up in Mendon, isn’t a fellow officer or even a “frequent flyer” - a term for someone who has regular brushes with the law. Dehey is a mental health clinician whose Framingham Police Department placement has just jumped to full time.

As of July 1, officers have 16 hours of access Monday through Friday to Advocates, Inc. employees who are trained for a jail diversion program developed a dozen years ago.

Drug Courts and Drug Treatment: Dismissing Science and Patients’ Rights

1/10/2014

Ordering people to stop treatment is bad for patients and the public.

Drug courts are promoted as a more humane alternative to incarceration for people who use drugs in the United States. But in our recent study, we found judges in New York were ordering patients to stop treatment with methadone or buprenorphine as a condition of participation in, or graduation from the drug court. This practice is unjust, ungrounded in medical evidence, and bad for patients and the public.

Battling Maine’s deadly drug addiction problem requires more than one approach

7/13/2015

An investigation that started Nov. 23, 2014, at a Westbrook motel resulted in the seizure of 35 grams of crack cocaine, 11 grams of heroin, an illegal firearm and $4,000 cash. Two New York men were charged in connection with the bust, according to police.

 

Last year, 208 people in Maine died of drug overdoses, a sad new record. Deaths attributed to heroin rose to 57 in 2014 from 34 the year before.

Reversing that upward trend is fortunately a focus among politicians from both parties in Augusta. And a handful of approaches to fighting Maine’s deadly drug addiction problem will be boosted by the two-year state budget they recently passed into law.

Treating Chronic Pain Without Opioids

7/9/2015

RichText.People with chronic pain often focus on opioid therapy for two reasons: (1) they believe it’s the only treatment that is effective, and (2) rarely do they understand the risks and consequences of long-term opioid use.
Opioids in isolation are poor treatment for chronic pain.

My Turn: New Hampshire Health Protection Program promotes public safety

6/7/2015

New Hampshire is in the grips of a heroin epidemic. Our challenge now is how to fight back and win. During a crisis like this, it is the responsibility of members of the judiciary to comment on measures that can improve the administration of justice. I believe this is one such time.

Vivitrol: Will the Medication Help Curb Opioid Abuse in W.Va.?

6/19/2015

In the world of medication-assisted substance abuse treatment, there are three prescription drugs that are the most widely known: methadone, Suboxone and Vivitrol.

Bipartisan Criminal Justice Reform Bill Could Cut Crime, Reduce Recidivism And Save Money

6/26/2015

A new bill proposing to reduce the United States’ prison population while also cutting crime and saving money was introduced Thursday in the House by Reps. Jim Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.) and Bobby Scott (D-Va.).

The legislation, titled the Safe, Accountable, Fair, Effective (SAFE) Justice Act, is the outcome of the congressmen's work leading the House Judiciary Committee’s Over-criminalization Task Force, which heard testimony from criminal justice experts over the past year and a half, according to a joint news release issued by Scott and Sensenbrenner’s offices.

A baby, a needle, a new drug war

6/25/2015

The tiny apartment was filthy, with just a few pieces of worn furnature and an empty fridge.

Painkillers: Seeing Our Opioid Addiction Crisis For What It Is

6/3/2015

Janna Malamud Smith: Instead of insisting pharmaceutical companies behave responsibly, we have unintentionally sacrificed our own kin for their profit. (AP)

Gloucester Begins Program Of Not Charging Addicts Who Seek Help

6/1/2015

BOSTON In an attempt to deal with a growing drug abuse problem, starting Monday, Gloucester police will not charge people who turn in illegal drugs.i

‘The only person he didn’t care about was himself’

5/31/2015

Ryan Harrington’s parents tried everything to help him kick heroin—begging, yelling, sprinkling him with holy water while he slept, kicking him out, letting him back in, calling around to recovery programs, calling the cops, getting him involuntarily committed.

National Drug Court Expert Makes Case to Legislators

The drug court model of alternative sentencing for addicts is backed by more evidence than many medications approvied by the FDA, said Douglas Marlowe.

Mass. opioid deaths topped1,000in 2014 Baker, aides discuss strategiesfor crisis

A P R I L 2 8 , 2 0 1 5

More than 1,000 people died from overdoses of heroin and other opioids last year in Massachusetts, according to figures released Tuesday that provide the sharpest portrait yet of an epidemic that has devastated families across the state.

Holmes: Challenging AA's assumptions

April 19. 2015 7:20AM

 

If addiction is a disease, why are we treating it with a support group?

The opioid epidemic is changing the way America talks about addiction.

Michael Botticelli Is a Drug Czar Who Knows Addiction Firsthand

APRIL 25, 2015

BALTIMORE — Six recovering substance abusers sat in an inner-city treatment center, sharing their stories. When Michael’s turn came around, he spoke of his former drug of choice, alcohol, and mentioned the night years ago when he drove drunk on the Massachusetts Turnpike, caused an accident and was arrested before passing out.

The Irrationality of Alcoholics Anonymous

April 2015

The Irrationality of Alcoholics Anonymous

Its faith-based 12-step program dominates treatment in the United States. But researchers have debunked central tenets of AA doctrine and found dozens of other treatments more effective.

 

J.G. is a lawyer in his early 30s. He’s a fast talker and has the lean, sinewy build of a distance runner. His choice of profession seems preordained, as he speaks in fully formed paragraphs, his thoughts organized by topic sentences. He’s also a worrier—a big one—who for years used alcohol to soothe his anxiety.

Crisis at a crossroads

March 21. 2015

Recovery from addiction is a long, hard journey often filled with challenges and setbacks.

Court referrals for addicts increase as detox options are harder to come by

March 21. 2015

FALL RIVER — There comes a time when alcoholics and addicts want help.

Good luck finding it on your own, said Vic DiGravio, president of the Association for Behavioral Healthcare.

Our View: The addiction treatment puzzle

March 21. 2015

 

When it comes to a person's struggles with addiction, sometimes the road to recovery begins through the courts. Some 70 percent of those meeting the criteria for treatment are not seeking it. Even if people are not ready to commit to treatment themselves, a judge can commit them into a treatment program if use of substances “is threatening grave physical harm” to the person or “substantially interferes with his social or economic functioning.”

Mothers of addicts look to each other for support in Marlborough

Mar 21, 2015

 

MARLBOROUGH – As the mother of two addicts, Kris Long believes it’s only a matter of time before one of them dies from a heroin overdose.

Recovering addicts urged to share victories

Mar. 23, 2015

HAVERHILL - Heroin overdoses have claimed thousands of lives — 25 in Haverhill alone last year.

Opiate addiction: Drug court provides alternative

Mar. 23, 2015

 

When the power of addiction sparks crimes of desperation, specialty court may be an option for addicts who find themselves on the wrong side of the law.

ichText.

Federal Government Set To Crack Down On Drug Courts That Fail Addicts (MAT)

02/05/2015

WASHINGTON -- The federal government is cracking down on drug courts that refuse to let opioid addicts access medical treatments such as Suboxone, said Michael Botticelli, acting director of the White House’s Office of National Drug Control Policy, on Thursday.

Kentucky Considers Changes To Drug Courts For Heroin Addicts

02/25/2015

 

WASHINGTON -- The Kentucky court system is reconsidering how its drug courts treat defendants thanks to a new federal policy that is pushing them to offer medications to opiate addicts.

Governor announces new panel on opioids

February 19, 2015

 

An estimated 978 people died of opioid-related overdoses in Massachusetts in 2013 — 46 percent more than the year before. Overdose deaths were more than twice as common as deaths from car and truck crashes.

Heroin-Plagued County Looks To New Medication To Aid Addiction

02/17/2015

 

The Marshall Project  |  By Alysia Santo

 

This article originally published by The Marshall Project, a nonprofit news organization focused on the U.S. criminal justice system. You can sign up for their newsletter, or follow The Marshall Project on Facebook or Twitter.

Kelsey Lindroth grew up in Suffolk County, Long Island, in the middle of a burgeoning heroin epidemic. She started with painkillers, and by 15, she had moved on to heroin. Now, at 24, Lindroth is sober, largely with the help of a new medication, Vivitrol, that blocks her opiate receptors. Even if she uses, she can’t get high.

Meth Effects: The Ravaged Faces Of Meth Result From Increase In Molecules Causing Cell Death

Feb 11, 2015

Meth speeds up cell-level fat metabolism, which leads to the accelerated aging of people addicted to the drug. Dan Hankins

02/02/2015

State Sen. Chris Eaton is planning to introduce legislation to encourage opiate treatment providers and doctors to break with an abstinence-based model and embrace evidence-based practices for treating addiction, the Minnesota Democrat told The Huffington Post.

January 29, 2015

Heroin-related deaths in Massachusetts have dropped significantly in January but remain at alarming levels, according to State Police.

So far this month, 68 deaths are suspected to have been caused by heroin overdoses, State Police reported Thursday. That figure is 40 percent less than the 114 deaths recorded in December, when opioid fatalities surged after declining over the summer.

January 29, 2015

Heroin overdoses and deaths in Massachusetts surged last month after a decline over the summer, a sign that the wave of opioid addiction is overwhelming some efforts to curb the crisis.

Ten months after then-governor Deval Patrick declared a public health emergency, State Police recorded 114 suspected opioid fatalities in December, nearly double the 60 that were tallied in November.

February 4, 2015

Two months after sharply criticizing a drug manufacturer for raising the price of its heroin antidote medication, Eric T. Schneiderman, the New York State attorney general, is expected to announce on Thursday an agreement with the company to offset those rates, as well as any new increases, for one year.

January 28, 2015

Research into how the human brain develops helps explain why teens have trouble controlling impulses.

 

Teens can't control impulses and make rapid, smart decisions like adults can — but why?

Research into how the human brain develops helps explain. In a teenager, the frontal lobe of the brain, which controls decision-making, is built but not fully insulated — so signals move slowly.

All Out On Addiction

1/5/2015

M e d i c a t i o n   is   a n e f f e c t i v e t o o l , d o n ' t   d i s c o u n t   i t

Incoming AG seeks tighter prescription monitoring

January 05, 2015

“I’ve heard too many heartwrenching stories over the last year. . . These drugs are more dangerous and lethal than ever,” said Maura Healey, Attorney general-elect.

Heroin gains a deadly foothold in Vermont

January 19, 2014

A flood of cheap heroin has thrust Vermont, land of green hills and sweet vistas, into an addiction crisis, a grave threat to younger residents and to a way of life

Governor-elect Charlie Baker meets with President Obama

December 06, 2014

WASHINGTON — Massachusetts Governor-elect Charlie Baker came to Washington on Friday pressing for more flexibility in health care, urging collaboration with other states in fighting opiate addiction, and exploring new ways to implement federal job-training programs.

August 19, 2014

New Hampshire’s first court dedicated to helping veterans charged with crimes won’t be its last.

Veterans’ advocates and health care providers will meet this month to begin planning a similar court for Grafton County, located near Vermont’s White River Junction Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

August 15, 2014

Authorities in Massachusetts and New Hampshire are cracking down on “synthetic marijuana,” a drug that has been linked to a series of recent overdoses as it remained on store shelves despite federal attempts to ban it..

August 14, 2014

Massachusetts’ opiate addiction crisis, which has ravaged families and upended lives, has had another, less-noted consequence: Women who are committed by the courts for detoxification often face repercussions significantly different from those that men face. A portion of state law known as Section 35 allows judges to commit people involuntarily who are shown to be at risk of “substantial harm.” In practice, these are often people brought to the courts by doctors, parents, or desperate relatives. Men are typically sent to a facility on the campus of MCI-Bridgewater, where they receive comprehensive treatment under medical supervision. Some women are sent to a private treatment center in New Bedford. But if there’s no room at that center, women can be sent to a general prison instead.

August 7, 2014

Harvard brain scientist Joshua Buckholtz has never forgotten a convict he met back when he was an undergrad conducting psychological tests in prisons. The man had beaten another man nearly to death for stepping on his foot in a dance club.

August 7, 2014

BOSTON — In response to the state’s opioid crisis, Massachusetts is about to expand access to substance abuse treatment.

Jul. 30, 2014

The Framingham and Natick District Courts will be host to a new Veterans Treatment Court,

08/03/2014

QUINCY (AP) - In a small courtroom in Quincy District Court, Judge Mary Beth Heffernan doles out instructions and advice the way a parent would: sometimes gently, sometimes firmly, but always with an encouraging tone.

Jul. 30, 2014

The nation's retreat from a maniacal and misguided mission to arrest and imprison our way out of our illegal drug problem has taken another important step.

5/13/2014

The Senate on Tuesday unanimously approved legislation to increase opportunities for long-term substance abuse recovery in the Commonwealth by supporting a continuum of care and removing barriers that stand in the way of effective treatment, Senator Jennifer L. Flanagan (D-Leominster) announced.

End The War On Drugs, Say Nobel Prize-Winning Economists

05/06/2014

The decades-long global war on drugs has failed and it's time to shift the focus from mass incarceration to public health and human rights, according to a new report endorsed by five Nobel Prize-winning economists.

Editorial: Patrick tackles opiate addition

Apr. 7, 2014

It takes strong medicine to fight an epidemic, which is what Gov. Deval Patrick prescribed last week in response to the dramatic increase in opiate addiction – and heroin overdoses – in Massachusetts.Patrick announced a three-pronged approach: funding education and prevention efforts, putting overdose antidotes in the hands of emergency responders, and stopping the introduction of a new, highly addictive painkiller to both medicine cabinets and the streets of the commonwealth.

Bay State hopes to double number of specialty courts

March 29, 2014

Specialty courts are a positive development for the criminal justice system that we want to strategically expand across the state (“The rise of custom justice,” Ideas, March 23). We appreciate Governor Patrick’s support for what we hope will be a doubling of specialty courts in Massachusetts over the next three years.

A Rare Opportunity on Criminal Justice

MARCH 15, 2014

The current Congress is the place where virtually all legislation, however urgent or reasonable, goes to die. Yet out of this stew of partisan mistrust and dysfunction there may come one promising and unexpected achievement: the first major reforms to America’s broken criminal justice system in a generation.

Opiate overdoses bring call for more drug courts

February 25, 2014

Broad calls for action also made in Mass.

Feb 14, 2014

SPH study: four brands account for more than half of all references