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If there is one thing Oklahomans are concerned about, it is the rising incidence of misuse and abuse of prescription narcotic analgesics like Vicodin and Percocet.

In fact, Oklahoma ranked number 1 in the country for having the greatest rate of nonmedical use of prescription narcotic pain relievers at 8.1 percent compared to the national average of 4.8 percent. In 2009 alone, there were a total of 1.2 million Oklahomans rushed to emergency room facilities across the state because of abuse or misuse of pharmaceutical agents. This showed a 98.4 percent increase from its 2004 levels. Sadly, almost half a million of these emergency department admissions were directly related to the abuse or misuse of prescription pain relievers. It is believed that a great majority of these prescription analgesic drugs are being diverted from formularies, dispensaries, pharmacies, doctors’ clinics, and even drug treatment facilities.

The mortality rate related to opioid analgesics was posted at 14.4 per 100,000 population while the national average was 10.5. Additionally, the mortality rate for drug overdose was 15.8 compared to 11.9 nationally. By the year 2010, prescription opioid pain reliever addiction admission rates to addiction treatment facilities was 9.1 per 10,000 population while the percentage of people seeking admission for other opiate addiction was 10.8 percent. These figures were as of 2010.

Clearly, Oklahoma’s drug enforcement and policy making bodies must be able to make significant improvements in the way they manage the drug scourge. While policy formulations can have a significant effect on the overall drug picture in Oklahoma, enforcement might be trickier. Many Oklahomans distrust recent efforts of the government not to penalize them if they come out in the open and seek treatment and drug rehabilitation.

While it remains to be seen whether or not policy changes can improve the number of treatment admission seekers, Oklahoma’s drug rehab facilities must be able to do their part in the process of addressing the state’s drug problems. Increasing the number of treatment admissions to any addiction center is a big challenge in itself. Many people all over the world, simply are not courageous enough to step out into the open and publicly acknowledge that they have a serious drug problem. It thus becomes a challenge for drug rehabilitation and treatment facilities how to encourage individuals to seek treatment.

Community organizations as well as faith-based support groups have been shown to work in some cases. However, the challenge still lies in the acceptance of these drug dependents who seek addiction treatment and rehab by the general society. Nonetheless, it is hoped that the continued efforts of these drug treatment and rehabilitation support groups can sway public opinion regarding the need to foster a more amiable social environment for rehabilitees.

One key element is the re-education of the young. More and more young people are looking at illicit drugs, particularly prescription drugs, as not inherently dangerous. They miss the point of the addictive nature of these products. As such, both drug rehab centers and community support groups in Oklahoma are doubling their efforts to increase the awareness and understanding of the younger population about the dangers of drug use.

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Website: www.eliterehabplacement.com

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