Nineteen suspected opiate deaths in the first 19 days of January have Erie
County on pace for 365 deaths in 2017.
It could be worse. Last year started more deadly.
During the early weeks and months of 2016, the epidemic was claiming so
many lives that county officials projected more than 500 people would die
that year. The pace, however, slowed as the county took aggressive steps,
including promotion of the widespread use of the opiate antidote Naloxone.
By year's end, 247 people had died in confirmed overdoses, with 77 more
suspected deaths, officials said Thursday.
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Anti-drug advocates hailed Gov. Chris Christie's pledge Tuesday to make
New Jersey's addiction crisis a top job in the final year of his term in
office, but there were worries about funding and follow through.
Using soaring rhetoric, heartfelt personal stories of loss and
unmistakable zeal, the governor used his State of the State address to
outline a series of new initiatives to battle the opioid epidemic that has
devastated New Jersey.
Paul Ressler, who lost his son Corey to a heroin overdose and now runs an
organization that informs the public about the use of the opioid overdose
antidote naloxone, praised the goal of getting more teenagers into
treatment. Christie promised to change state regulations that exclude 18
and 19 year olds from treatment facilities for children.
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Over a 12-hour period in Beverly Hills, two sisters and a boyfriend of one
of the them were rushed to the hospital after accidentally overdosing on
Police say all three are lucky to be alive.
"The boy was the luckiest," said Detective Sgt. Lee Davis of the Beverly
Hills Public Safety Department. "Two of our detectives went to his house
about the two prior overdoses and they found him totally unresponsive and
all alone. If they didn't show up, this probably would have been a totally
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[photo] Addy Schultz, 72, cuddling a baby going through opioid withdrawal
at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, ( DAVID SWANSON / Staff
Marie McCullough covers health and medicine, with a special focus on
cancer and women's health issues.
Study suggests prevention efforts are having an effect on melanoma in Pa.,
As the 13-day-old infant scrunched up his face and squirmed in obvious
pain, Addy Schultz tightened her embrace. The baby relaxed in her arms
"When he cramps up, I hold him harder and pat a little firmer," explained
Schultz, 72, sitting in a rocking chair in the newborn intensive care unit
at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital. "They don't like to be stroked or
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House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., told reporters Thursday that
Congressional Republicans are on a "rescue" mission to repeal and replace
the Affordable Care Act and that he and President-elect Donald Trump are
in perfect sync with the process of replacing Obamacare. (CHIP
Funding for mental illness and opioid addiction treatment in Pennsylvania
will take a big hit if the Affordable Care Act is repealed, according to
research published this week by Harvard Medical School.
More than 181,000 Pennsylvania residents with mental and substance abuse
disorders will lose access to services made available under the ACA,
concluded Harvard health economics professor Richard G. Frank and New York
University public service dean Sherry Glied.
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Professor Shad Ewart is teaching a course on emerging markets in relation
to marijuana legalization and entrepreneurial pursuits at Anne Arundel
Start stoner-friendly munchies stands in Colorado. Or open a lounge near a
marijuana dispensary in Oregon.
Or try selling fertilizer to weed growers, dude.
"Opportunities are endless, whatever we can create in our heads," said
Dean Warner, an Anne Arundel Community College student.
The college launched Monday a class exploring business opportunities
around the country's expanding marijuana market.
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Charles Cutler is an internal medicine specialist from Norristown.
Want to know what's important in medicine today?
Ask Charles Cutler, an internal medicine specialist from Norristown who
last month was sworn in as the 167th president of the Pennsylvania Medical
The society's 16,000 members are physicians and medical students
throughout the state. Among the issues it promotes are leadership,
education, and public health.
Cutler, a member for 35 years, belongs to numerous other medical
organizations, including the Board of Trustees of the Montgomery County
Medical Society. He is a member of Einstein Physicians Norriton, a part of
the Einstein Healthcare Network.
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Growing up, Evan Blessett was as an avid soccer player and honor roll
student. He loved skateboarding and played the drums later in his teen
But one role that his dad, Doug, never thought his son would play was one
of a recovering drug addict.
"The thing that gets me is he got past us," Doug Blessett said about his
29-year-old son, who is a counselor at The Healing Place, an addiction
recovery center in Louisville. "When my son went through this, I took it
personally. You think you would see it, and I didn't."
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Marijuana is still illegal under the federal Controlled Substances Act.
But Washington voters in 2012 legalized the cultivation, sale and taxation
of recreational marijuana. California voted in November 2016 to do
Will taxes on marijuana help pay high cost of K-12 education funding?
The state's Republican lawmakers have been as slippery as a pig on ice
when it comes to finding dollars to pay for state Supreme Court-ordered
full funding of K-12 education in Washington, a pattern seen Thursday at
The Associated Press' legislative forum.
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A recommendation by state Rep. Joel Kleefisch would have parents request
their high school students be tested for illegal drugs.
Students drive out of the parking lot at the end of the school day at De
Pere High School on Wednesday, Dec. 21, 2016. Students who have parking
permits at the school are subjected to random drug testing throughout the
school year.(Photo: Adam Wesley/USA TODAY NETWORK-Wi)
GREEN BAY - Rep. Joel Kleefisch had a ready response for lawmakers and
school administrators who were quick to speak out against a proposal late
last year for statewide random drug testing in high schools.
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Mandatory drug testing of students at a two-year technical college in
Linn, Mo., has been banned by a federal appeals court.
The court has reinstated the ban on mandatory drug testing for most
students at the State Technical College of Missouri. The decision was the
latest ruling in a 5-year-old lawsuit.
The Chronicle of Higher Education and The Associated Press reported that
by a 9-2 vote, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 8th Circuit overturned an
earlier decision by a three-judge panel of the court.
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A study of Washington high school students out Tuesday examining marijuana
use among students in the state two years before and after the vote to
legalize in 2012 finds that marijuana use increased by about 3 percent
among 8th- and 10th-graders over that period.
Conventional wisdom, based on results since marijuana was legalized three
years ago in Colorado, is that availability of legal weed is having little
or no effect on teen's use of the drug.
However, a study of Washington high school students out Tuesday flies
somewhat in the face of prevailing opinion. Examining marijuana use among
students in the state two years before and after the vote to legalize in
2012, it finds that marijuana use increased by about 3 percent among 8th-
and 10th-graders over that period.
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Dugan Arnett wandered down Winter Street while looking for marijuana in
Call me old-fashioned, but I trusted Nancy Reagan when she urged me to
Just Say No. I listened when McGruff the Crime Dog insisted that "users
are losers." And when my younger sister arrived home one night back in
high school smelling of the devil's lettuce, I did what any
self-respecting graduate of the DARE program would do: I told my mom.
So when my boss approached me to ask if I'd be willing to go out on
Thursday - the day marijuana officially became legal in Massachusetts -
and attempt to buy some, it's safe to say I was caught off guard.
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There is a place in city of Rochester where people from all walks of
life have been gathering. About half of them come from the city, the
other half drive in from the suburbs, or even farther, to get here
every day. It is a hub of diversity, unlike any other in the Finger
Lakes region. Men and women, young and old, business executives,
soccer moms, students. They drive shiny BMWs, family minivans, and
pickup trucks with antlers mounted on the hood.
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Lacey Township Middle School is one of the first in the region to drug
test middle school students. Here's why.
LACEY -- Middle schoolers here are among the first in the region to take
part in a random drug testing program that could shape the battle against
Superintendent Craig Wigley said the program is ready to launch after New
Year's, and he expects about 100 of the middle school's roughly 700
students to participate.
Parents must enroll their seventh- and eighth-graders in order to take
part in the voluntary program, under which students who fail a random drug
test would be removed from sports and extracurricular activities for 10
days after the first offense, 45 days after the second offense, and longer
for a third offense.
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Does legalizing recreational marijuana cause more teens to smoke it?
That's highly possible, according to a new UC Davis study, which found
teens in Washington state were "significantly" less aware of its potential
harm and more likely to have smoked pot after it became legal.
"Adolescents are particularly important to look at, since some will go on
to chronic use. This is something we need to look at further ... to
prevent any unintended consequences down the road," said Dr. Magdalena
Cerda, associate professor in emergency medicine and associate director of
the UC Davis Violence Prevention Research Program.
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The anti-marijuana-legalization movement has made the claim that
legalization will lead to an eruption in teenage marijuana use a central
part of its narrative.
But it turns out that the kids didn't get the memo.
The University of Michigan's Institute for Social Research is out
with its latest national survey of teenage drug use, including
marijuana use, and what it found was that since 2012, the year that
Colorado and Washington state legalized pot, teenage drug use is down,
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Officials, former inmate contrast the emphasis on treatment vs.
When Leola Bivins was first sent away for dealing drugs, she was a
22-year-old high school dropout with a 2-year-old daughter at home.
Addiction was the center of the life she knew in East Stroudsburg,
where she was born and raised, she recalled recently. Bivins' mother
was a heroin addict - she eventually died of an overdose - and
seemingly everyone around her was either selling drugs or abusing
them, Bivins said.
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After multiple failed attempts over the course of a century,
Proposition 64, which legalizes the recreational use of marijuana,
passed with a 56 percent vote in California on Nov. 9.
Proposition 64 legalizes the recreational use of marijuana; anyone 21
and older can possess up to an ounce of marijuana and grow a maximum
of six marijuana plants at home. The proposition can also potentially
reduce sentences as well as clearing criminal records of prisoners
that have been convicted of felonies related to the possession and
consumption of marijuana.
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