South Florida may be best known for great weather and sunny beaches, but according to a new report it’s also the home of an alarming number of heroin abusers. A new study from the National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA) states that heroin-related deaths in the Sunshine State rose 89 percent between 2011 and 2012.
In Miami-Dade County, the situation is even more dire, as the area has experienced a 120 percent spike. “We’re talking here about the mother of addictions,” said James N. Hall, an epidemiologist who authored the report, to Reuters.
One Bad Drug for Another
The crossover from the prescription products to illicit heroin complicates that and will fuel the continued epidemic. Although statistics for heroin-related deaths in 2013 have not yet been calculated, Hall told the source that he expects the problem to worsen before it improves.
Law enforcement officials in the area say that most of the drug supply has been coming from Mexico. The cartels south of the border have been producing a version of the the drug that seems to be more potent than kinds available in the past.
The Consequence of Fixing The Problem
Until few years ago, Florida was known to house dozens of “pill mills” – medical offices that write prescriptions for narcotics without patient examinations. A nationwide crackdown on prescription drug abuse, however, has mostly put an end to these establishments.
An unfortunate consequence of this law enforcement effort has seen pill addicts moving to heroin. The street drug is cheaper and often provides a more powerful high.
Is someone in your life abusing prescription drugs or heroin? Now is the time to seek help. Contact Intervention Services to learn how an experienced interventionist can help.