Drug Abuse Dilemma

With Massachusetts facing a growing epidemic of opioid addiction, the state’s Catholic bishops urged in a statement released on March 2 that action be taken to quell the epidemic. “The abuse and misuse of opioids has become a national and local epidemic.... On average, four people lose their lives each day in this state, due to illegal and legal drug overdoses. It is a disturbing trend that must be stopped,” said the statement signed by Cardinal Seán P. O’Malley, O.F.M.Cap., of Boston, Bishop Robert J. McManus of Worcester, Bishop Mitchell T. Rozanski of Springfield and Bishop Edgar M. da Cunha of Fall River. The statement was issued through the Massachusetts Catholic Conference, the public policy arm of the Catholic Church in the commonwealth. In their statement, released on March 2, the bishops asked that health care providers “demand improved education within their own professional groups about the appropriate indications, prescriptions and use of opioid medications.” Additionally, they urged lawmakers to continue working on legislation to combat the opioid crisis.

Comments are automatically closed two weeks after an article's initial publication. See our comments policy for more.
Robert O'Connell
2 years 6 months ago
What amazes me is how much we invest in minimizing fatalities due to auto accidents. Right now we seem to suffer more fatal overdoses than road fatalities! Yet, to some extent, the idea of "working on legislation to combat the opid medications" sounds tiresome: has legislation helped yet? Fatal drug overdoses are a symptom of a much bigger failure to "love our neighbor" more than any lack of "education" among health care providers. If we focused on helping families secure wholesome lives and making jobs available to everybody who wants one fewer people would be tempted to use or sell drugs.
Richard Booth
2 years 6 months ago
I agree, Robert. But, I think we should not forget that someone decided to take a first hit, a second hit, and so on, of street drugs. Personal responsibility must play a role here somewhere, at least in those cases in which an individual has the capacity for choice.

Advertisement
Advertisement

The latest from america

Father Michael Nixon and parishioner work a volunteer table at St. Dominic Catholic Church in Panama City, Fla. Photo by Atena Sherry.
Much like New Orleans’ Ninth Ward after Hurricane Katrina, the low-income neighborhoods east of Panama City, where St. Dominic is located, were especially hard-hit by the storm. Now residents here are desperate for help.
Atena SherryOctober 18, 2018
“I believe there are adequate, alternative options for true women’s health care out there, and Planned Parenthood is not needed,” said Alisha Fox, a health and wellness coach at a Catholic fertility center in Chicago.
Colleen ZeweOctober 18, 2018
 Ethiopian Cardinal Berhaneyesus Souraphiel of Addis Ababa checks out the name badge of Nathanael Lamataki, a youth delegate from the French territory of New Caledonia in the South Pacific, as they leave a session of the Synod of Bishops on young people, the faith and vocational discernment at the Vatican Oct. 5. (CNS photo/Paul Haring)
Cardinal Souraphiel highlighted the role globalization plays in connecting young people in unjust ways.
Michael J. O’LoughlinOctober 18, 2018
The pope said he would visit North Korea “if an official invitation arrives.”
Gerard O’ConnellOctober 18, 2018