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The money saved by quickly stopping the street use of heroin can be staggering.  Much of the saving can be realized by the insurance companies themselves.  HealthNet now has an opportunity to lead the way.  The cost savings are especially true in the case of heroin addicts with dangerous dual diagnosis of another disease or mental illness, simply from the standpoint of greatly reducing the need for ER service.  click here to read more

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Noteworthy recovery source locator website that contains hundreds of places to find treatment.  Check it out,  CLICK HERE

Webb Crime Bill Moving in House – by Ryan Grim, Huffington Post 06-24-09

“Delahunt, a senior Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee, said that reform of the American justice system should begin with a broad look at drug policy.”  See full article here.

Written by Ted Jackson
June 2008
The War on Drugs has its roots in a U.S. lead prohibition effort that began over one hundred years ago, an initiative that has ultimately resulted in the criminalization of non-prescription drug use in practically every nation on earth. In the wake of the explosion of drug use following the Vietnam War, the War on Drugs in its current aggressive and malignant form began with the creation of the DEA, along with other programs and legislation, during the Nixon administration. And, now, the newest numbers from the Justice Department are just the latest in a long line of events and data that prove the abject failure of one of the most misguided policies in the history of this nation.

Year after year, the Justice Department announces record numbers of prisoners, and the latest figures are no exception, with 7.2 million people reported as incarcerated in 2007, by far the largest per capita imprisonment rate in the world. DOJ estimates that 21 percent of all state inmates, and 55 percent of federal inmates, are sentenced for drug crimes. But other estimates of drugrelated imprisonment put the figure at closer to 75 percent of the prisoner population. And it now costs $60 billion a year to fund this vast new prison industrial complex, an eightfold increase since the War on Drugs, in its current incarnation, began 35 years ago. When governments seeks to criminalise a common behavior – 40 million Amercans have used cocaine – it sets itself up in a war against the people, a war that we have seen has had huge costs on society. If the War on Drugs were effective, it might be worth the cost. But the War in Drugs has not been in any way effective, and it’s time now for a new policy.

Right on Pastor Mike! Fitchburg, MA area – Pastor Mike offers counseling and Recovery Groups Tuesday evenings at home groups and is affiliated with the Crossroads Community Church, 839 Ashby State Rd., Fitchburg, MA 01420, Tel. 978-342-8637 – www.thecrossroadscommunity.com is the website and email is crossroads08@verizon.net.   This is for people of this area seeking help for their addictions.  Crossroads Community Church is a Christian community church.  Connecting with Crossroads may be a positive option for those with addictions and struggling in their lives, to connect with others who have been successful with overcoming addiction.

Excerpt from the book Trapped by Lori Stephens and Robert Nahas:

…My spinning head started to slow down.  I felt like I’d just stepped off the Tilt-a-Whirl at the carnival.  No point of reference, nothing around me staying in one place, everything changing shape.  My eyes slowly focused, filtering out the fuzzy, indiscernible shapes in the surrounding environment….  Local sounds still seemed off in the distance, coupled with a cave-like ringing sound in my ears.  My body, numb and lax, felt like it vibrated, so much that it hummed from the inside out.  Though I lay motionless, I could feel every cell in my body vacillating in frantic horror, trying to keep my organs in play and everything going according to the master plan.  It was mass chaos without the coordinated efforts of my brain, which was off-line and useless at the time….

…With the toxic concoction that had flown through my body for the past twenty hours, there was a cellular panic of a different order.  The desperate urge for more was well heard by the incumbent resident.  My insatiable body scorned the exhausted liver and kidneys for robbing the precious poison, while they approached total shutdown.  And like every other time, the voices, in unison, grew louder and louder with each pump of my heart:  “MORE METH!… MORE METH!… MORE METH!… MORE METH!”  Like in the final mile of a marathon, my heart struggled to thrust yet one more time….

Excerpt from the new book What’s Left of Us by Richard Farrell.  The book will be available from Amazon after June 30, 2009.

I am a heroin addict.  My life is limited to three concerns.  The first thing I gotta figure out every morning is how to get a bag of heroin into my arm no more than ten minutes after I wake up.  If I fail, I’m dope sick.  The cramps inside my lower stomach go on a full-scale attack….

… The majority of heroin in Lowell originates from New York City.  Puerto Rican gangs bring it here by the kilo.  The drug dealers on Adam Street who package the heroin from one pound bricks into grams and half-gram are no Einsteins.  They cut the heroin or add fake shit….

… Too much pure heroin in a half-gram package equals a “hot shot.”  You’re history, because five minutes after the rush your heart stops.  Too little or no heroin in a half-gram package gets you dope-sick.

… But my major concern on Adam Street is “cotton fever.”  I’d rather be dope-sick all day than get what the Puerto Rican junkies down here call “cotton shot rush.”  It’s when a dirty piece of cotton fiber used to filter the heroin makes it into your bloodstream….

… “Cotton shot rush” is a perfect example of life as a heroin addict.  You live for the moment.  If it happens, it happens.  But there is no mistaking it when it hits.  Ten to twenty minutes after you pull the trigger it whacks you like you’re in the third day of the flu virus.  The ears give it away:  if they start to ring you’re fucked.  Pressure begins to mount on each side of your temple like a vise squeezing slowly together.  Sweat pours off your brow but at first there is no temperature associated with it.  The shakes progress quickly to trembles.  Chills hit immediately after and the body’s temperature spikes….

… I wasn’t always a homeless, jobless, low-life heroin addict.  Once I was a good kid, an altar boy for Father Muldoon right here at St. Patrick’s.  I went to the YMCA as a young boy and played basketball, baseball, and football… injuries from football got me addicted to drugs, and the night I watched my father die, and everything else that happened, sent me on a path to heroin.

“Yo, yo! Heroin, cocaine. Dimes and nickels.”

Buprenorphine, An Alternative Addiction Therapy
From Soft Landing Recovery.com., Dr. A. Fahmy, Medical Director

Suboxone and Subutex, it is an FDA approved medication for office based treatment of opiate addiction. It reduces opiate withdrawal symptoms and cravings during the treatment of pain killer addiction.   Combined with appropriate behavioral counseling Buprenorphine, Suboxone and Subutex, can be very effective in treating dependence to opiates and other Pain killers addictions and abuse.

Suboxone is a combination of Buprenorphine and Naloxone. The former is a partial opiate and the euphoric effects are less than with full opiates; also the habit forming potential is lower and therefore it is much easier to stop taking this medicine than other full opiates, such as morphine and heroin. The latter component, naloxone, is an opiate antagonist that is mainly active if Suboxone is injected, hence it acts as a deterent to injecting those tablets.   For detailed and accurate information about Suboxone please visit the manufacturer website at www.Suboxone.com

Also see other resources at this web site.   National Alliance of Advocates for Buprenorphine Treatment.

Loved this…just got this by email …..great video.  Inspiring and goes with the theme of all of us being in this world together for a reason…  What are Friends for – Mary

From the award-winning documentary, “Playing For Change: Peace Through Music”, comes the first of many “songs around the world” being released independently.  Featured…

Stand by me.  Inspiring acceptance, forgiveness, and recovery

*  *  *

Stand by me.  Inspiring solutions to the dilemma of addiction.

*  *  *

Stand by me.  Inspiring  life

*  *  *

Stand by me.  Inspiring  freedom

*  *  *

This video is disturbing to view, as is shows the impact of highly alluring and addictive crystal meth, which has a reputation of being very disfiguring to the user.

Click here for viewing  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4jH1zql_fQI&feature=related

The Narconon program offers a jail alternative to imprisonment and state-supported addiction. More than thirty years ago, an inmate in Arizona State Prison decided to do something to help himself and his fellow prisoners break free from drug dependence. This was the beginning of the Narconon program. A fundamental element of its success is “The New Life Detoxification Program” developed to cleanse the body of accumulated drug residues. This regimen of exercise, nutritional supplements and sauna sweat-out has redefined the concept of drug “detoxification,” and has enabled thousands of addicts to live without continued drug cravings.

“Narconon has a unique position in the rehabilitation field,” said Alfonso-Paredes, M.D., a Professor at UCLA’s School of Medicine and a member of the Narconon International Science Board. He advocates drug rehab as a jail alternative. “It offers addicts a relatively painless, drug-free withdrawal something that most addicts and professionals consider impossible. It has developed effective programs at no cost to taxpayers, at a time when the government has invested billions of dollars in experimental approaches that have not offered satisfactory solutions.”

In a discussion of the Narconon program as a jail alternative, it was stated that the program;” understood that drugs store up inside the body, and that there was something biochemically wrong with people who were drug dependent,” said Dr. Forest Tennant, M.D., an expert in the field of drug abuse who has examined thousands of addicts. “As a result of breakthroughs, Narconon has to my way of thinking – been the most successful residential program for hardcore drug users that the world has ever seen.”

A certainty is growing among parents, law enforcement professionals and those in the rehabilitation field that new approaches to treating addiction must be found. A jail alternative such as the Narconon program is the new key to ending addiction, one that we cannot afford to ignore.

The Atlanta Recovery Narconon program offers a jail alternative to incarceration for most that have created criminal/legal charges as a result of their drug addiction. In the past, a number of states in America have used us as a jail alternative to incarceration and have awarded the client with ‘time served’ at the completion of the program. If you or your family member has encountered legal difficulties as a result of their drug addiction, please give us a call or go to the contact us page and fill out the help form and our legal liaison will determine to what extent we can help find a jail alternative.   Narconon – 877-574-2251 http://www.atlantarecoverycenter.com

The fundamental battle in the fight against substance abuse is the struggle to help the individual addict become drug-free. Drug Rehabilitation, supported by drug education, is the only weapon that can undercut the ebb and flow of supply and demand, and the spread of crime throughout the world, and gives a jail alternative that is statistically superior.  “We’re not protecting the public safety because we aren’t treating the problem,” said Joseph Califano, Jr., former U.S. Secretary of Health, Education and Welfare and the president of CASA. “We’re supporting the illegal drug market because we are just sending customers back.”

In America, dissatisfaction is growing with the national emphasis on arresting and incarcerating drug abusers, as few jail alternatives exist to incarceration. A 1999 study by the American Bar Association (ABA) noted that a 73 percent increase in drug arrests between 1992 and 1997 had resulted in no decrease in drug use.  State Senator Stewart Greenleaf wrote a sentencing law that has flooded Pennsylvania’s prisons with low-level offenders who cannot be paroled. “These laws haven’t worked as we planned,” he told the Atlantic Monthly. “We haven’t been honest to the public or ourselves.”

Dr. Max Ben, who has conducted research programs for the National Institute of Health, lays part of the blame for rehabilitation failures on a dependence on “medicinal” drugs to treat “illicit drugs”. For more than a century, physicians have advocated substituting supposedly benign (or at least ‘less harmful’) drugs to prevent or halt the destructive course of addiction,” he observes. “Time and time again, these remedies have failed to meet expectations, and often have lead to new addiction…” With no jail alternative, addicts often do their time, then relapse.

Atlanta Recovery Center

The International Narcotics Control Board has characterized the United States as “the biggest illicit drug market in the world.” The toll on American society has been considerable. America’s prison population has tripled in the last 17 years, and drug and alcohol abuse and addiction are implicated in the incarceration of 80 percent of the men and women incarcerated in state, federal and local prisons, according to a 1998 report from the Center for Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA). A workable jail alternative is clearly needed.

All told, one out of every 144 Americans is behind bars for a crime in which drugs or alcohol are involved, and the majority have no jail alternative. Thirty billion taxpayer dollars are spent a year to incarcerate them. CASA estimated in 1996 that if current trends continue, by the year 2000, America would be spending $100 million a day to jail individuals with serious drug and alcohol problems.   Atlanta Recovery Center

Many thought that the treatment industry might experience a sharp downturn during this harshest of recessions, but we here at Treatment Magazine have never believed that, looking as we have at the fundamentals, which point toward explosive growth over the next decade as vast sums are shifted from the prison system into the treatment industry. And on the private side, insurers have been hugely remiss in cutting back on funding by amounts that are no longer going to be tolerated by a public more and more wanting access to quality care. We believe that the treatment industry, as it introduces increasingly sophisticated “evidence based” treatment products, is on the cusp of a period of unprecedented explosive growth with annual spending on treatment easily reaching $50 billion a year within the next ten years, double our nation’s current rate of spending.    Treatment Magazine

June 10, 2009

The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500
Attn:  President Barrack Obama

URGENT HEALTH/ DRUG ABUSE ISSUE

Dear President Obama

I am a small Tucson business owner and father currently affected by the downturn.  My boy, Owen is 22, diagnosed with type 1 diabetes and is a heroin addict. He also has some judgment impairment (ADHD…)  Without too much detail, I need to say the system is failing him and other addicts, especially those with life threatening diseases.  He  is a non-violent person and frequently ends up in jail instead of rehab, because rehab is so difficult to get into if your not very wealthy.  The outcome of being an addict often leads to jail.  After 4 years, he hasn’t much time left  to get well or he could die on the streets.  I urge you to address the epidemic of drug addiction with compulsory federally mandated addiction treatment and rehabilitation,  especially for addicts in grave danger from the complications of overlay diseases such as diabetes, type 1, HIV, hepatitis, etc…

I would like to add that my beautiful son is currently homeless in Los Angeles and in and out of ER.  Lately, he made (4) ER visits to North Ridge Medical Center, LA,  for dangerous  diabetic complications (keto-acidosis).   Unfortunately, the medical system, particularly in ER fails to grasp a global view of the patient while in ER and frequently discharges patients back on to the streets with life saving prescriptions they can not easily fill.  Measures that would help and could prevent the overtaxing of ER facilities around the country could be triggers for compulsory psychiatric evaluation and transfers to appropriate lower cost facilities or rehabilitation centers or even a simple shelter.

Legal complications should also be noted.  Regarding an addicts impact with the legal system, they rarely are able to follow through with court mandates while active in addiction, nor does the legal system make a distinction or accommodation for the circumstances of a young sick addict.  For instance, court mandated commitment to rehabilitation is not triggered in cases where an infraction is not specifically drug related (i.e. possession) even though DA’s know the offender is an addict and in Owen’s case, gravely ill.  Most addicts are released to the streets without a treatment mandate and re-offend or overdose.  From a very concerned father.

Sincerely

William Ford,  Concerned Dad

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