Most businesses are being affected by drug addiction among employees, particularly that of heroin or prescription painkillers. The National Safety Council recently conducted a survey which found that 70 percent of workplaces are negatively affected by opioid abuse. 40 percent of businesses said that employees were missing work due to painkiller addiction.
Recent reports have shown that opioid use among Americans is at an all-time high. The Daily Caller investigates:
A recent survey from Truven Health Analytics and NPR reveals more than half of the U.S. population reports receiving a prescription for opioids at least once from their doctor, a 7 percent increase since 2011. Data released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Friday reveals that almost half of non-cancer patients prescribed opioids for a month or more are still dependent on the pills a year later.
Deborah Hersman, president and CEO of the National Safety Council, stated that “employers must understand that the most dangerously misused drug today may be sitting in employees’ medicine cabinets.”
Experts are saying that the problem stems from doctors who are too readily prescribing powerful painkillers, which can easily cause addiction and often proves a gateway for heroin abuse. New Jersey Attorney General Porrino put the onus on physicians, saying “when four out of five new heroin users are getting their start by abusing prescription drugs, you have to attack the problem at ground zero – in irresponsibly run doctors’ offices.”
Patient responsibility is being identified as a key in avoiding prescription drug addiction. Patients need to start questioning their doctors about their treatment, say experts. By taking responsibility for their own health awareness, patients can avoid unnecessary drugs.