drugs | Connecticut Public Radio
WNPR

drugs

A coalition of Connecticut cities and towns are looking into suing pharmaceutical companies to hold them liable for their costs in responding to the opioid crisis.

More than 30 governors from across the US are gathering in Providence for the summer meeting of the National Governors Association. An epidemic of opioid abuse in the states is one of the top problems facing the elected officials.

The acting head of the Office of National Drug Control Policy is in Vermont this week to study the state’s response to the opioid crisis.  The nation’s “drug czar” says the Green Mountain State’s programs and efforts are models that can be emulated nationally.

This week, as senators have decamped from Washington for the Fourth of July recess, the future of the Senate's Affordable Care Act replacement plan — and by extension, Medicaid — remains uncertain.

The U.S. is in the midst of an opioid crisis. Millions of Americans are addicted to the powerful prescription painkillers, and tens of thousands are dying each year from overdoses.

A new report out Thursday offers a bit of hope: Doctors are prescribing opioids less often, and the average dose they're giving patients has dropped, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Tony Bacewicz / C-HIT

Last May, Samantha Collins’s drug use, legal problems and dealings with the Connecticut Department of Children and Families forced her to strike a bargain with the agency.

Ernesto del Aguila III, National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) / Creative Commons

Researchers in Connecticut and nationwide are having a hard time recruiting minorities for clinical trials.

This hour, we find out why and we examine the impact on our health. Does mistrust of doctors and drug companies play a part?

There’s a new tool in the fight against drug overdose deaths in Rhode Island. Publicly available boxes containing naloxone, an anti-overdose drug, have been installed in various social service agencies in Providence.

Dr. Geoff Capraro, a physician at Rhode Island Hospital, helped design the so-called NaloxBoxes, which he likens to a fire extinguisher.

EP_JHU / CREATIVE COMMONS

Connecticut lawmakers unanimously passed legislation that will take additional steps to address the state’s opioid crisis.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Frank C. Muller / Creative Commons

In the 1800s, Connecticut peddlers would travel south to peddle goods made in small factories around the state. The best way to increase their profit margin was to slip a few pieces of prized nutmeg -- and a few fake wooden ones to match -- in their bag. It didn't take long to expose the fraud, earning us the nickname of the Nutmeg State, known by all as clever, if ethically challenged, people. 

ep_jhu / Creative Commons

The state's efforts to control the opioid addiction crisis are getting a boost from new federal funding. Connecticut will receive a $5.5 million federal grant. 

Jamiesrabbits / Creative Commons

President Donald Trump's nominee to head the Food and Drug Administration was before Congress this week. Scott Gottlieb wants a quicker approval process for new drugs, but a new study said the FDA already works faster than its peer agency in Europe.

A man named Eddie threads through the mid-afternoon crowd in Cambridge’s Central Square. He’s headed for a sandwich shop, the first stop on a tour of public bathrooms available for drug use. Eddie, whose last name we’re not including because he uses illegal drugs, knows which restrooms on Mass. Ave. he can enter, on what terms, at what hours and for how long.

Mike Acton / Creative Commons

Twenty years ago, a lot of Icelandic teens were drinking too much. But an innovative program changed that.

This hour, we talk with the American researcher who helped combat the problem by tapping into natural highs — like sports. If the program has worked, why aren’t other countries following suit? We find out.

RUSTY BLAZENHOFF / CREATIVE COMMONS

State Rep. Vincent Candelora proposed legislation that would impose a six percent tax on medical marijuana.

Fuse / Thinkstock

Stamford-based Purdue Pharma is seeking the dismissal of a lawsuit which alleges it is responsible for the opioid abuse epidemic. 

Connecticut Health I-Team

In less than eight hours last June, Yale New Haven’s emergency department treated 12 patients who had overdosed on opioids. Three died; nine were saved.

Lori Mack/WNPR

Connecticut Senators Chris Murphy and Richard Blumenthal are co-sponsors of new legislation to help combat opioid addiction. The Budgeting for Opioid Addiction Treatment Act -- known as the LifeBOAT Act -- would establish a funding stream. Murphy called it an innovative piece of legislation. 

Microscopic, bear-shaped animals called tardigrades are one of the most resilient animals on earth. Known colloquially as water bears, they can survive freezing temperatures, radiation, even a trip to outer space.

The creatures are famous for their ability to withstand extremely dry conditions. Water bears can go without water for 10 years, surviving as a dessicated shell. Just how they come back to life when their environment is friendlier has baffled scientists for years.

Brett Levin / Creative Commons

The Connecticut General Assembly's Public Health Committee had some tough questions for the co-sponsors of a bill that would legalize recreational marijuana in Connecticut.

Chuck Grimmett / All Creative Commons

Is marijuana a harmless way to relax or a dangerous gateway drug? The science says “no” and “we don’t know,” respectively. Arguments for and against legalization often misrepresent the medical effects of cannabis, some experts say.

Shardayyy / Creative Commons

Accidental drug deaths in Connecticut continue to surge, according to data released by Connecticut's Chief Medical Examiner.

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

Cities across the state have struggled to crack down on mismanaged "sober houses" -- residences where people with addiction can pay to live in a drug and alcohol free environment.

Aetna, one of the nation's largest insurance companies, says that starting in March it will remove what's been a key barrier for patients seeking medication to treat their opioid addiction. The change will apply to all its private insurance plans, an Aetna spokeswoman confirmed. Aetna is the third major health insurer to announce such a switch in recent months.

frankieleon / Creative Commons

Yale researchers say treatment for opioid addiction should start in hospital emergency departments. Results from an ongoing study released Monday find positive long-term benefits.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Connecticut Governor Dan Malloy unveiled on Thursday a series of measures aimed at combating and preventing opioid addiction. 

Creative Commons

Almost four years after Protein Sciences began selling its innovative flu vaccine, the Meriden company still struggles to gain a foothold in a marketplace dominated by pharmaceutical powerhouses.

Keoni Cabral / Creative Commons

How mental illness is treated across our nation could change under a new federal law.

This hour — the Mental Health Reform Act — what is it and what does it mean for mental health and substance abuse treatment in our state?

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

The number of deaths from heroin and synthetic opioids continues to rise in New England, according to data just released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Pages