Surgeon General Issues Addiction Report
The first Surgeon General's Report on Alcohol, Drugs, and Health, published on November 17, 2016, acknowledged the staggering substance misuse problem in the United States and outlined a comprehensive approach to dealing with this devastating issue. Substance misuse is the defined as using drugs or alcohol in a manner, situation, amount, or frequency that could lead to harm—for the user or those around him/her.
According to the Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality in the Report, 66.7 million people in the United States reported binge drinking within the past month and 27.1 million people were current users of illicit drugs or misused prescription drugs in 2015. And those numbers likely are continuing to rise.
Substance abuse and addiction take a tremendous toll on individuals, families, and communities. They reduce quality of life and compromise physical and mental health by increasing health care costs, crime and violence, motor vehicle crashes, abuse and neglect of children, and the spread of infectious diseases. The Surgeon General's Report on Alcohol, Drugs, and Health reviews a number of topics related to substance use, misuse, and substance disorders and focuses on current issues and practical questions—including important questions about preventing and treating addiction.
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