Searching for Solutions (Spokesman-Review; February 4, 2007)

A 12-year-old brings hydrocodone tablets to a middle-school slumber party. A high-schooler steals methadone pills from her parents’ medicine cabinet. A 21-year-old cuts open a 12-hour Fentanyl patch, squeezes the drug onto tinfoil, and smokes the entire contents through a “tooter,” the stripped plastic cartridge from a Bic pen.  Read more…

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Deadly Prescriptions (Spokesman-Review; February 4, 2007)

Deaths from prescription painkillers have soared in Spokane and across Washington during the past decade, according to new research that warns of danger as close as the bathroom medicine cabinet. Popular drugs such as hydrocodone and methadone fueled an 800 percent increase in statewide deaths linked to prescription opiates, which jumped from 45 in 1995 to 411 in 2004, state health researchers found.  Read more…

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Little relief in sight for painkiller addicts: Only one doctor in region willing to prescribe Suboxone. (Spokesman-Review; December 16, 2007)

Pent-up demand for a drug that helps addicts kick prescription painkillers has prompted a new federal law that more than triples the number of users each doctor can treat. But new rules expanding the use of buprenorphine – sold as Suboxone or Subutex – will put barely a dent in the need in the Inland Northwest, experts said.   Read more…

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Indian youth’s death ends a troubled life. (Spokesman-Review; December 16, 2006)

Even in death, the fate of Robley “Bobby” Carr Jr., remains unclear. This afternoon, in a small memorial at an evangelical church near this Stevens County town, Bobby’s friends and family will gather to remember a teenage foster child and his traumatic life. After that, it’s uncertain where the body of the 15-year-old will be interred. Bobby’s foster father, Steve Horton, said he is unsure whether the boy will be buried near his hometown, or hundreds of miles away on an Indian reservation in Western Washington.  Read more…

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Local grassroots group seeks to stem abuse of prescription pain medication.(September 1, 2006)

“There is a perception that since it comes from a doctor, it is safe,” says Jim Tilla, a Chewelah area resident who has seen firsthand the consequences of the abuse of pain killing medication. “It steals life away from a person.” Tilla explained that the most widely abused pain medications include OxyContin, Oxycodone, and Hydrocodone. “These drugs are synthetic heroin and horribly addictive,” Tilla added. “I’ve seen abuse take lives and destroy families.” Tilla is the catalyst for the newly-formed group Prescriptions for Life, a grassroots organization in Chewelah seeking to educate the public – especially parents and children – about the dangers of prescription drug abuse.  Read more…

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Powerful DVD Available

View the Intro to our informational DVD below. To request a copy, send us an email. A $10 donation for the DVD would be greatly appreciated!

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Fact #3

Abuse of these drugs ruins lives. In addition to the pain and hurt of addiction, the law allows for felony charges and penalties up to ten years in prison and/or a $25,000 fine.

Source:  Stevens County Prosecutor’s office

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Fact #2

The number of prescriptions filled for oxycodone and hydrocodone have increased three to four times over the past two years in our community!

Source: Actual pill counts from Chewelah area pharmacies

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Fact #1

Oxycodone and hydrocodone are among the most widely abused prescription drugs. These are powerful prescription pain medications and are a form of synthetic heroin.

Source: National Institute on Drug Abuse

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Rx4Life is About

A community coming together: industry leaders, social and public services providers, health professionals, educators, and individuals to address a growing problem of addiction and hidden drug abuse. Of immediate concern are prescription drugs used to treat pain. These commonly abused prescription drugs include:

  • oxycodone (OxyContin, Percodan, Percocet)
  • propoxyphene (Darvon)
  • hydrocodone (Vicodin, Lortab, Lorcet)
  • hydromorphone (Dilaudid)
  • meperidine (Demerol)
  • methadone

In the short term, these drugs block pain messages and cause drowsiness. A large single dose can cause severe respiratory depression and death. Long-term use leads to physical dependence and, in some cases, addiction. To learn more about safely disposing of prescription medication, click here.

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