Prescription Analgesics, typically opioid pain relievers
"Opioid medications are essential not only for drug dependence treatment but also for pain management. WHO estimates that 5 billion people live in countries with little or no access to controlled medicines that are used to treat moderate to severe pain.90 Up to 80% of the estimated 1 million patients in the end stages of AIDS are in great pain, but very few have access to pain relieving drugs91 because of insufficient knowledge among physicians, inadequate health systems, fears of addiction, antiquated laws, and unduly strict regulations.92"
Estimated Lifetime Prevalence of Substance Use in the US by Those Aged 12 and Older (Numbers in Thousands)
"Naloxone distribution programs in the US are ongoing in Chicago, Baltimore, San Francisco, New Mexico and New York City. Additional community-based organizations interested in minimizing the adverse consequences of drug use in several cities in the US, including Los Angeles, Providence, Pittsburgh and Boston, are in the process of planning and developing naloxone administration programs for drug users."
"In 2016, an estimated 6.2 million Americans aged 12 or older misused psychotherapeutic drugs at least once in the past month, which represent 2.3 percent of the population aged 12 or older (Figures 18 and 19). Of the four categories of prescription drugs that are presented in this report, prescription pain relievers were the most commonly misused by people aged 12 or older. The 6.2 million people aged 12 or older who misused prescription psychotherapeutic drugs in the past month included 3.3 million who misused prescription pain relievers in that period.
"'Opioid' is a generic term for natural or synthetic substances that bind to specific opioid receptors in the CNS, producing an agonist action. Opioids are also called narcotics—a term originally used to refer to any psychoactive substance that induces sleep. Opioids have both analgesic and sleep-inducing effects, but the 2 effects are distinct from each other.