One of the hottest topics in any political year where there is a bid for the presidency, some of the hottest topics get carried into the debates. As usual, the war on drugs is being brought into the political arena and each politician has his or her own take on the matter. It is without doubt that we are failing miserably as a nation in our efforts to end such rampant drug abuse, but laying the blame outside the borders seems to be the hottest topic. In an effort to expose the gravity of the situation, Choices Recovery reveals some rather startling statistics that indicate why the problem is so much bigger than a simple government ‘solution.’
Insufficient Manpower to Control Substance Abuse
The main problem with the focus of waging a war on drugs through government intervention lies in the fact that there is insufficient manpower to police the streets. As one addiction counsellor explains it, the epidemic is so severe in New England that it is easier to get drugs delivered than it is to get a postal delivery. Per Wickstrom understands this, but he also knows that all the government intervention in the world isn’t going to make a difference unless the addict admits to the problem to the addiction. As the founder and CEO of Choices Recovery drug rehab facility in South Bend Indiana, Wickstrom sees first-hand the real statistics that even the press isn’t reporting.
Death Rate Not Tracked Appropriately
There is another side to the national problem with drug abuse and that is the high number of deaths directly attributed to substance abuse. However, even that has its downside in that the government has not established an accurate system for charting drug-related deaths and to compound the problem, not all drugs are tracked! While the Centers for Disease Control, CDC, does monitor some drugs, even their list is inconclusive and that’s why national figures are so much higher than any government report. It’s just a plain and simple fact. Statistics tracking drug related deaths in the United States are incomplete.
A Look at Facts as Reported by the CDC
The latest figures on record that are ‘complete’ are those reported by the CDC for the year 2014. In that year alone, at least 76,522 deaths directly linked to drug abuse were recorded. This is up from just 17,000 in the year 2000, substantiating the fact that drug abuse truly is an epidemic in the U.S. The 2014 breakdown for drug related deaths on a national level is as follows:
- All drugs of all types 47,055
- Analgesics (prescription) 18,893
- Heroin overdose 10,574
Now bear in mind that these are just the statistics that one government agency is reporting and these can be skewed by a high percentage.
The list could go on and this is why Per Wickstrom and his team at Choices Recovery are seeking ways to help alleviate the problem for good, one addict at a time. No matter how hard and long you look at the national statistics, the one common denominator is that drug abuse is running rampant in our society. There is no quick fix but there is a way to reach the majority of addicts. It’s a matter of helping them recover, one at a time, and then sending them out to be peer counselors for those still actively using.
“We may never get the real story from politicians,” Per says, “But you can be sure that the figures they quote are so much lower than the reality. At Choices Recovery we recognize this discrepancy and as a result are proactive in getting the word out. Even then, the only thing we can offer is support and guidance. It is up to the addict to take that initial step towards recovery, but we will be here for them.” And that they are.