Dr. Wakeman ’s Excellent Exposition on the Overdose Crisis

Jeffrey A. SingerSarah Wakeman, MD is the Medical Director of the Massachusetts General Hospital Substance Use Disorder Project and an Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard University Medical School. She has a wealth of experience treating addiction and has published research on thecomparative effectiveness of various treatment modalities for opioid use disorder.Dr. Wakeman recently gave aninterview to theHarvard Gazette in response to therecent news that overdose deaths for the 12 months ending April 30, 2021 reached a stunning 100,000, 75 percent of which were opioid ‐​related, with 85 percent of opioid‐​related overdoses involving illicit fentanyl.Her exposition on the overdose crisis covered much more ground than I was able to cover in myletter to the editor of theWall Street Journal. Among the many excellent points she made was the fact that drug prohibition is a major cause of overdose deaths:The crisis and its worsening are related to a number of factors. One is the ongoing unpredictability and poisoning of the illicit drug supply. Increasingly, the drug supply is contaminated with fentanyl, and there is a lot of unpredictability in what people are using.You could compare it to alcohol, where we have a regulated supply. We of course still worry about alcohol use disorder and identify and treat it. But if you ’re going to a restaurant or a bar or a store and you ’re consuming alcohol, you know the alcoho...
Source: Cato-at-liberty - Category: American Health Authors: Source Type: blogs