Indiana News

Indiana Officials Taking On Prescription Drug Abuse

9/17/2012


Dr. Joan Duwve (left) and Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller  (WIBC.com photo: Mike Corbin)

The Indiana Prescription Drug Abuse Prevention Task Force is now a reality.

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The group, headed up by Attorney General Greg Zoeller, held its kick off meeting in the Indiana Government Center Monday. Various state and local leaders are working on ways to tackle the problem of prescription drug abuse in Indiana. That latest figures show prescription drug abuse is up by 500% and officials say it represents a nationwide problem to the tune of $193 billion a year.

Indiana Department of Health Chief Medical Officer Dr. Joan Duwve cites reports that say there has been a nationwide 40% increase in the number of employees who test positive for prescription drug highs at work. She adds that more than half of people who've taken prescription drugs illegally get them from family and friends. Duwve adds that 80% of those family members and friends get their drugs from primary care doctors and others who overprescribe medication.

No word on when the task force will come up with recommendations aimed at creating future legislation. However, Zoeller says that's the function and goal of the task force.

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