The Overdose Crisis: Beyond Opioids

Sheila P. Vakharia, writing for New York Daily News:

Although opioids dominate the headlines, stimulant drugs like cocaine and methamphetamine never went away.

In fact, more Americans use illegal stimulant drugs like cocaine and methamphetamine than use all opioids combined, and recent data suggests they’re contributing to our skyrocketing drug overdose deaths. The latest estimates from the Centers of Disease Control suggest that the number of cocaine-involved deaths across the nation more than doubled between December 2015 and December 2017, while methamphetamine-involved deaths increased by 82% during that period.

Given the prevalence of stimulant use and the growing role of these drugs in our overdose crisis, it is time to broaden our public health interventions beyond a singular focus on opioids to address the unique risks associated with stimulants and poly-drug use.

Amen. People can love their uppers (and benzos, for that matter) too much too.