Prescription painkiller abuse is a serious problem in the state of Hawaii. In the United States, it has become a serious epidemic that takes thousands of lives per year. In Hawaii, prescription drug overdoses now top auto accidents as the leading cause of death. When legal medications are killing more citizens than cars, you know that there is a serious problem. What is even more scary is that most of the overdoses are coming from people who are not even prescribed the medications.
Selling your prescription drugs can be very risky, but extremely lucrative. People who are prescribed opiate painkillers are finding it hard not selling their medications because of the value on the black market. To most people, selling your medication on the black market sounds crazy, but to someone who has been addicted to opiates, their mentality may be altered.
In a society where we want everything instantaneous, the same goes for our treatment when we see our physician. Doctors are trained to prescribe medications based on their patient's symptoms. When patients come in to see a doctor and they are complaining of chronic pain, it is easy for a doctor to write a prescription for an opiate and go about their day. Most patients expect to leave their doctors office with some sort of medication. The skewed idea that you need a pill for a symptom is leading our society down a dark path.
It is very difficult for doctors to judge their patients pain. A patient can have an agenda before they see their doctor. They are going strictly to try and get prescribed opiates painkillers to either abuse or sell. How can a doctor possibly know what their patient is doing? If a patient says they are in pain, the doctor can not accuse them of lying. Doctors are running a business. Their business is their practice and thy have to walk a slippery slope these days. It is very easy for people to go onto a rating website and write bad reviews about a doctors bedside manner. Because of HIPPA laws, the doctors can not reply about the specific patient. This leaves doctors in a rough spot.
Hawaii is having a hard time like most of the United States controlling the painkiller epidemic. Pharmacies around Hawaii have been robbed for their medications. The medications they are stealing are worth lots of money on the black market. Many Hawaiian addicts would rather get their hands on prescription painkillers rather than heroin because they know what they are buying. When taking painkillers, addicts are sure of the dosage. The issue with abusing prescription painkillers is the cost. As more and more laws are implemented and the pills start to dwindle from the street, addicts need to find their fix somewhere else. Unfortunately that tends to be heroin. Heroin does not have any type of quality control which normally leads to overdoses. Hawaii, like the rest of the country is losing this battle. We need a new way of taking care of this epidemic.