Morning Roundup: Oct. 30, 2019

By The Fix staff 10/30/19

Women and children ensnared by opium, heroin in Afghanistan. Ben Affleck acknowledges sobriety slip-up. Beto O'Rourke voices support for syringe services, harm reduction.

Afghanistan is the world's largest opium producer. ID 160408983 © Nursel Ozarslan |

The Deadliest Drugs in America in 2017 [US News]
The year 2017 saw a sharp increase in deaths from fentanyl, cocaine and methamphetamine. The CDC listed the top 10 deadliest drugs in that same year. 

Women and Children Are the Emerging Face of Drug Addiction in Afghanistan [NPR]
"Husbands often addict wives and mothers often addict children." Heroin and opium are a problem in Afghanistan that has been growing for years. The country is the largest opium producer in the world. 

Beto O'Rourke Says He Supports Needle Exchanges, Safe Injection Sites for Drug Users [Iowa City Press-Citizen]
2020 presidential candidate and former congressman Beto O'Rourke supports needle exchange and safe injection facilities, he said at a recent meeting with the Iowa Harm Reduction Coalition. "I want this to be a human and humane policy." 

Opinion: Another Chinese Threat to Our National Security: Prescription Drugs [The Hill]
Has the U.S. relied too much on China's manufacturing of important drugs? Tom Jurowsky analyzes the American prescription drug market, and how it has evolved, in the context of foreign policy.

Opinion: Drug Policies Are Killing Our Children [Guardian]
A reader's response to the Guardian's recent editorial: they argue that decriminalization is necessary to create a safer environment for all. "Ask any parent (like me) who has lost a child to illicit drug overdose and they will tell you that drug policies are killing our children as much as the drugs themselves." 

Report: The Full Cost of the Opioid Crisis: $2.5 Trillion Over Four Years [White House]
The opioid crisis has cost the U.S. more than $2.5 trillion between 2015-2018, according to the Council of Economic Advisers. Even with the recent dip in opioid-related deaths, "this crisis is far from over." 

Spice Is More Than a Deadly Drug—It's a Window on Our Society [Guardian]
Spice or K2, "the so-called zombie drug" plaguing Britain's poorest, is appealing not for a euphoric high, but causing a user to shut down. Author Mike Power analyzes the significance of the drug's popularity.  

Ben Affleck Breaks Silence After 'Slip' in Sobriety [MSN]
"It's a slip, but I'm not going to let it derail me." Ben Affleck admitted to breaking his sobriety by drinking while celebrating Halloween last weekend. He acknowledged his mistake and said "it happens." 

Please read our comment policy. - The Fix

The Fix staff consists of the editor-in-chief and publisher, a senior editor, an associate editor, an editorial coordinator, and several contributing editors and writers. Articles in Professional Voices, Ask an Expert, and similar sections are written by doctors, psychologists, clinicians, professors and other experts from universities, hospitals, government agencies and elsewhere. For contact and other info, please visit our About Us page.