The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), which is within the United States Department of Health and Human Services, has released a new report which definitively reveals how Big Pharma is flooding the country with prescription opioids.
In 2017 there were 110.4 million outpatient prescription opioid fills, i.e., in 2017 at least 110.4 million bottles of prescription opioids were dispensed. Therefore, it is safe to say that Big Pharma floods the country with over 100 million bottles of prescription opioids per year.
Notably, this number does not include the amount of prescription opioids that are being dispensed in hospitals, which is quite significant as well.
Additionally, the report finds that 28.8 million American adults received at least one bottle of prescription opioids in 2017, which is 11.5% of the entire adult population of the country.
Other stats include that 45.9 million bottles of Hydrocodone were dispensed, 26.8 million bottles of Oxycodone, 21.6 million bottles of Tramadol, 6.1 million bottles of Codeine, 4.5 million bottles of Morphine, and 5.5 million bottles of other opioids such as Hydromorphone, Oxymorphone, Fentanyl, Methadone, and Buprenorphine.
Ultimately, this report shows how Big Pharma is fueling the Opioid Pandemic, which kills 50,000 Americans every year. Further, the death toll is just one devastating aspect of the Opioid Pandemic. Prescription Opioids are highly addictive, and perhaps millions of more Americans have had their finances, families, and lives destroyed by addiction, which is a catastrophe that is simply not captured by the death toll.
Zooming out, not only is this flood of prescription opioids fueling the deadly Opioid Pandemic, but it is also fueling the Drug War, which has killed an untold amount of people and has led to countless millions of Americans being incarcerated.
It is asinine that the government says that they are fighting the Opioid Pandemic and the Drug War, yet continue to allow Big Pharma to flood the country with Prescription Opioids. There is a 0% chance that the Opioid Pandemic or the Drug War will end until Big Pharma is forced to cut down this flood of prescription opioids by at least 100X, since until then, people will continue getting addicted and overdosing.
On a final note, the Opioid Pandemic could easily be brought to an end if doctors gave patients Kratom for chronic pain and opioid addiction/withdrawal, as explained in numerous articles on Kratom Cafe. The only reason that this isn’t happening is money. Indeed, in the report referenced in this article, it discusses how the prescription opioid expenses for adults in 2017 was $7.7 billion, and this does not include billions more of prescription opioid expenses at hospitals.
The question is, when will the government finally put lives ahead of money and embrace Kratom? Hopefully soon, since every day another 137 people die in the United States from opioid overdoses.