26 August, 2016
US Surgeon general Vivek Murthy will be sending a letter to all U.S. Physicians addressing the opioid epidemic facing the country. In it he explains what the issue is doing to communities across the country, how we got here, and what doctors can do now to help solve this issue. Dr. Murthy explains that in the past, doctors were told that opioids were safe to use and had virtually no addictive traits. This has caused a quadrupling of prescriptions handed out by doctors, but virtually no increase in the amount of pain over time. Dr. Murthy ends the letter with a call to action to all doctors to help him “turn the tide” on the opioid epidemic this country faces, and asks doctors to pledge to do something about it.
This actually marks the first time in US history that the US Surgeon General has penned a letter to all physicians, a good indicator of the severity of the situation. According to the CDC in 2014, almost 2 million people either abused or depended on prescription drugs. Prescription opioids also go hand-in-hand with the heroin epidemic, so it is also very important to discuss this issue. If you or someone you know, is a physician, I encourage you to read this, or pass this along to the physician in your life, and take the pledge to turn the tide.
What do you think about the Surgeon General’s letter? Comment down below.
Link to the US Surgeon General’s letter can be found here.
Story can be found here.
Turn the Tide Rx website can be found here.