The Latest Advocacy News Headlines on Addiction, Treatment and Recovery Policy, WHITE HOUSE seeks 1.2 Billion for Addiction Treatment.

There is a huge story trending now with the opiate addiction problem. I have pasted the link, but there are many other stories out  there. Please link the ones you like. I am pretty upset by this , yet I hope some good comes of it and not another WAR on DRUGS ….yikes….make Pot Legal everywhere, drop the drinking age back to 18 and they wont be stealing your opiate pills – then off to heroin. They will smoke some pot and have a beer. God forbid we Americans learn how to drink moderately.  🙂

White House officials announced Tuesday that they will seek nearly $1.2 billion in new federal funding over the next two years to address the growing problem of heroin and prescription opioid use, an epidemic that has become an increasingly important policy priority among the nation’s politicians.

The centerpiece of the proposal is $1 billion in mandatory funding over two years to expand access to treatment for prescription drug abuse and heroin use, $920 million of which would go to the states. Another $500 million, some of which is a continuation of existing funds, would support work by the departments of Health and Human Services and Justice to expand not just treatment but access to the overdose-reversal drug naloxone, and support targeted enforcement activities.

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Here is my twist on it all.

There are many people who use pain medication properly and and do not abuse it. There are many sides to this problem. The problem with opiate addiction is coupled with the failure of the religious AA or 12 step dominated rehabs that fail miserably…and have for decades. Yes some people abuse these drugs, but saying Opiate Addiction is taking over the country and killing so many is absurd. I along with many have a real disease called CANCER. SOME 600,000 people will die from Cancer in the USA this year alone and over 2 Million will die throughout the world in one year. WHERE IS THE PUBLIC outcry about that? No — they would prefer to march with pink ribbons—–the breast cancer movement is a joke and almost as bad as the way AA has hijacked addiction treatment. The pink ribbon ladies have hijacked Breast Cancer Research and prefer to sit in Support groups and run 5 K walks/runs. I don’t think I will be joining them.

Yes some Doctors give too many pills, I too have received a bottle filled with Vicodin for a broken ankle when all I needed was 12 pills….not 30.   ( I don’t  have an issue or a problem with pills ) so I don’t get the abuse of it ….but… the rest of the world should not have to be penalized. Just listen to his wording– the senator speaking to the  President “The Addiction is going to rise up and consume this country?” HMMMM sounds like Nixon, Regan, Bush and yes Harry Anslinger, our first Drug Czar who began our failed War On Drugs.

We need to provide real treatment.  That would be Doctors who are not pushing AA, Mental Health Professionals who are not pushing AA, a 1930’s religious self help group that is also not safe. I had a Father who was addicted , then stopped them for 17 years, and began again and lost everything he had and died in 2008. I know the heart ache of losing someone I loved to abuse of a substance. If I knew about non 12 step help, he may still be alive.

All the two hatter AA members who are making a killer on crap Sober Living, which is like a flophouse, crappy rehabs that charge $1,000 a day to be driven to a free AA meeting where violent offenders are waiting to prey, this is not Mental Health HELP. This is not   Medicine or Science. So when they are handing out the 1.2 Billion Dollars, I hope this money goes to the other 6 free options, that currently exist. I hope this money goes to free clinics we need where SMART Recovery, Harm Reduction, SOS, LifeRING, Women for Sobriety and Moderation, and The SINCLAIR Method are used with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Motivational Interviewing and can be used along with the psych meds that may be needed. I hope this money will also be used for Research. But I hear it’s only for treatment. Well that’s the other part of the problem. The treatment in America is 95 % Alcoholics Anonymous. A lay person, highly religious support group from 1935, that is unregulated, unsafe and has untrained, anonymous persons in charge. Yes there are leaders in Alcoholics Anonymous. They are on their General Service Board and they work in the NY office and their are delegates that work for free all over the Country.

I hope this money is used for new types of treatment that we know is working much better with young persons like Science and Kindness used at The Center for Motivation and Change, Practical Recovery, St Judes Retreats, The Baldwin Institute, Alternatives in Los Angeles and The Center for Optimal Living… hence Harm Reduction.

AA is infested in rehab to the tune of 30 Billion dollars already. Why does this industry need 1 billion dollars. Ill tell you why. Because those who are already running this Industry, who make big bucks DO NOT ….give BACK ….to help those with addiction disorders, but rather force their AA on everyone from the kid on the block who is shooting heroin, to the MOM hooked on Xanex, to …..the FAA, Pilots, The Board of Nursing, Nurses and Doctors and Lawyers who seek help from just abusing alcohol. The rehab INDUSTRY BUSINESS is already pushing this antiquated thing called  “Alcoholics Anonymous”.

Let’s move on and get 2015 science, medicine and therapy’s to help not only those with opiate addictions, but anyone caught up and/ or suffering with a Drug & Alcohol over use issue.

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10 thoughts on “The Latest Advocacy News Headlines on Addiction, Treatment and Recovery Policy, WHITE HOUSE seeks 1.2 Billion for Addiction Treatment.

  1. I too hope they will spend this money wisely, however, more than likely, since were dealing with the government, they will waste it using the same worn out method with its 95% failure rate. I hope I’m wrong, but my guess is they will use the money to send a greater number of individuals to 12-Step rehabs who otherwise could not afford the cost of treatment just so they can say their working toward solving the problem and pat themselves on the back. I agree that all the non 12-Step treatments you listed would be of more benefit, but the fact that it was the American Medical Association that finally agreed to classify Alcoholism a disease when it became financially convenient for them to do so ( I don’t believe it was a coincidence that they agreed to do so around the time that treatment centers became popular and what better way to expect to gain insurance reimbursement), the fact that our court system sends criminals to AA meetings, and the fact that the government is already choosing 12-Step rehabs when sending patients who need government assistance, leaves me with little trust in the government to make necessary changes. I had to pay for my part in one of those stupid rehabs. Fortunately, I had insurance, but I was still out a few thousand dollars. Rehab was not what I expected in the least and in my opinion it was more harmful than helpful. Being told your powerless over a disease that doesn’t exist, going to free AA meetings and being brainwashed, listening to counselors repeat a lecture that belongs in an old Medicine Show as a solution to your cure, and only receiving one hour of personal counseling once a week (interrupted I might add) is what I call a major rip off and no solution. It was my counselor’s recommendation that I live at one of those flop house Sober Living homes and I am so thankful I refused from what I later learned about them. My counselor was so mad at my decision and my care down spiraled for the remainder of my stay and her attitude toward me greatly changed. Almost makes me wonder if they get some kind of bonus for referring patients and it would not surprise me in the least. Learning what I have learned since I left AA, I believe the 12-Step Rehab industry is nothing but one big money making racquet. Shame on those who are making money off this and know it’s nothing but a scam and shame on the government if they continue to send patients to a program that has been proven not to work the majority of the time. The government will tell me how much they really care about the welfare of addicts based on one major criteria and that is rather or not they consider an alternative solution to AA and 12-Step rehab.

  2. jaswim- so true- its a shame. I plan on making some changes with the system beginning with the Judges and the DA’s. We have to start somewhere.

    I think Rachel Bernstein gave me another good idea today.

    Thanks for your post. As always…sane and real.

  3. Excellent article. I, too, think the so-called war on drugs is a sham and has been a monumental waste of tax payers money. The mass hysteria concerning opiate pain medication really sickens me when there are a lot of people with chronic pain issues who do not abuse their medicine or go on to become junkies. Schedule II for Vicodin in the same category as morphine? Give me a break!
    I’m also a former aa member and if some of my former cohorts knew I had taken prescription pain medication for over 3 years they would have looked at me askance with ill-concealed condescension that would make it clear they thought I was well on the way to that slippery slope which leads to dying as a drunk. I’ve not had a drink in more than thirty years, most of those years without any involvement with the aa program. Sometimes I would return to meetings because I care about newly sober people who are trying to put their lives together but virtually everyone who goes to meetings promotes a hard sell on sponsorship, another disaster. If continued sobriety is contingent on reliance on a power greater than oneself, whatever a persons understanding of what that might mean, should we not be on equal footing with each other without the “pedestal” scenario?
    Lack of accountability was my biggest dilemma with aa. Beside the fact that sponsors get to treat their sponsees any way they want with prevailing attitude that the sponsee probably deserved it, there is no kind of guard against the kind of sexual harassment that goes in aa groups. I worked for a company with a strong policy against that kind of behavior. Harass somebody and it cost you your job. So, no, aa is unfortunately not in a position to take the lead in any kind of government-funded recovery programs.

  4. Our local D.A. sent out a short article tracing the increase in opioid abuse in the past years. What I found interesting was that the slope of the curve changed from mostly horizontal to mostly vertical in January 2005. Not coincidentally, that is when Medicare Part D passed. That is when Medicare started paying for prescription medications. Monica is right. Doctors hand out scripts too easily. Only now, seniors have a way of paying for them. So, now that they can fill the whole bottle for a couple of bucks, one of two things happen. Grandma takes a couple of the pain pills and leaves the bottle in the medicine cabinet. Later, teenage grandson comes along, finds the medicine, and abuses it. Another, more nefarious scenario is that Grandma gets $1400 a month in Soc Sec. She can buy 90 Oxy 10 mg from Wal Mart for $3, but this bottle of meds has a street value of $900. She has her nephew sell them on the street and they split the difference. She can do the same with some other prescriptions–not hard to get two or three Rxs for drugs of abuse–all at taxpayer’s expense. Before long, Grandma has doubled or tripled her monthly income. Solution? Drop Medicare part D coverage for Rx narcotic pain relievers, except for inpatient care or hospice care. If people want these drugs badly enough, they will pay for them.

    Coincidentally, I had a long discussion with the DA about this trend. He was a bit taken aback by my audacity. Funny thing happened, though. Two weeks later, he had a case on his desk of a grandmother doing exactly what I described. Still, and we both agree, the vast majority of this type of abuse is the former story of the teen steeling the excessively prescribed meds. Either way, it’s been a reckless policy of Medicare part D that his largely responsible for the initial exposure to Rx pain narcotics.

  5. Substance Abuse Workers who are AA Members are the worst. They use AA Cultural Attitudes to judge clients and report to the courts. I worked in a Rehab as a relief counselor and I know I was the only one there downloading any of the free therapy material available from SAMHSA.

    Another thing is AA Groups that come into facilities. I have seen a staff member make incoming AA Member fill out confidentiality forms or have the clients fill out release forms for the AA Members. For everyone else (Parents, Probation Offices, Doctors) client have to fill out release forms. I guess AA Members are just Special.

  6. William—– WOW thats outrageous. Is that illegal in the hippa rights world — or medicine ? Oh thats right rehab isnt medicine its AA concocted crap religous pop psch frm 1935 ? aka hippie dippy new age no science, no mental health that I was also subjected to as a teen and young person.

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