America’s Opioid Epidemic Essay

Check out more papers on Drugs Heroin Opioid Epidemic

The opioid epidemic has been a great issue in the nation. There are many tragic situation of the prescription drug affecting someone's life for the worse. In this policy memo, I will be discussion and informing the issues and the controversy of the opioid epidemic and will be giving background information of this epidemic and how it originated.

This epidemic has been an issue since the 1990’s. According to the National Capital Poison center, The use of opioids increased in 1991, where the prescription drug was greatly influenced and prescribed by many pharmaceutical companies. The companies promoted this prescription drug by stating that the chances of becoming addicted were slim to none. They began prescribing opioids to non-cancerous reasons without enough data that stated the effects of this prescription drug. Then in 2010, began an increase in deaths and the increase of heroin use. Around this time, they noticed how opioids affect the people in a negative way which they began to limit the use of opioids. The use of heroin increased due to the limits of prescription and obtaining opioids because heroin was a cheap alternative for the use. This increased the rates in deaths and also increased the chance of transmitting a disease such as HIV, hepatitis or infections in the skin. This epidemic also introduced a new drug in the market which is a synthetic opioid, fentanyl which caused even more deaths in 2013. This epidemic all tied back to the pharmaceutical’s generous distribution of opioids in the nation, new drugs were manufactured and distributed that are incredibly dangerous which caused a huge amount of deaths in the nation.

This graph illustrates the amount of deaths that have been caused by the opioid epidemic. As you can see there is an increase in the deaths that occur due to the opioid epidemic. The opioid epidemic is a nationwide issue that affects americans. Having chronic pain of some sort can lead to the prescription of opioids and can increase the risk of misusing this drug. It can be so innocent before you know that you are depending on this highly addictive drug. It can be a simple prescription that can lead to an individual becoming highly addicted to opioids.

According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, you can become highly addicted to this drug by using it without a prescription, using the drug in ample amounts than should or in a longer period of time than should, or if they are used in any other reason that what the doctor prescribed. This public health crisis is in most cases not intentional and can become highly addictive quick.

In 2017. President Trump began an initiative to stop the opioid crisis. According to the, there was demand to stop over-prescription, by educating americans of this highly addictive drug and also began cutting the amount of supply in the public by finding the sources of where they were distributed. Then he began assisting those in need of rehabilitation through treatment and support services. Donald Trump and congress worked to pass the SUPPORT act in order to help the drug crisis. This assistance cut the number of heroin users by more than half in July 2017 and helped limit the prescription of this drug by 16 percent.

Throughout my whole research on this topic, I learned that there is no debate that the opioid crisis is a great issue in the United States of America. The debate is whether it should be stopped at all costs or if they should continue to distribute opioids and limit the doses and the potency of the drug. According to Dr. con Gunten, the president of medical affairs hospice and palliative medicine at Ohio Health Kobacker House, he believes that there should be access of these opioids in treating moderate to severe pain like cancer. He also states that there are studies that the risk of becoming addicted is in age, “ Although the prevalence among those older than age 18 is .37%, the prevalence decreases with increasing age”. The chance of becoming addicted to this substance decreases as you become older. The issue in this is that many doctors have been afraid to prescribed this drug due to liability.

According to the Washingtons Post, there has been many approaches in the epidemic from each house of congress. They have been making influences to stop the flow of fentanyl from transporting here internationally. There is still a lot of work to do, but as of right now we are aware that this epidemic will cost the United States billions of dollars to fix


  1. Public Affairs. (n.d.). What is the U.S. Opioid Epidemic? Retrieved April 30, 2019, from
  2. (n.d.). Retrieved from
  3. National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2019, January 22). Opioid Overdose Crisis. Retrieved
  4. April 30, 2019, from
  5. Opioid Epidemic. (n.d.). Retrieved April 30, 2019, from
  6. (n.d.). Retrieved April 30, 2019, from
  7. Ending America's Opioid Crisis. (n.d.). Retrieved April 30, 2019, from
  8. The Great Opioid Debate: Treating Cancer Pain Safely. (n.d.). Retrieved April 30, 2019,
  9. from
Did you like this example?

Cite this page

America's Opioid Epidemic Essay. (2021, Mar 17). Retrieved June 25, 2024 , from

Save time with Studydriver!

Get in touch with our top writers for a non-plagiarized essays written to satisfy your needs

Get custom essay

Stuck on ideas? Struggling with a concept?

A professional writer will make a clear, mistake-free paper for you!

Get help with your assignment
Leave your email and we will send a sample to you.
Stop wasting your time searching for samples!
You can find a skilled professional who can write any paper for you.
Get unique paper

I'm Amy :)

I can help you save hours on your homework. Let's start by finding a writer.

Find Writer