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50 Americans die each day from prescription drug overdose, and more than six million people suffer from prescription drug abuse disorders in the U.S. Drug overdoses were blamed for 999 deaths in Indiana in 2012, a 57% increase over the past decade. Attorney General Greg Zoeller is committed to fighting this epidemic in our state. Visit www.BitterPill.IN.gov to learn more.
In 2012, Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller launched the first and only statewide Prescription Drug Abuse Task Force to help fight rising abuse. Zoeller co-chairs the Task Force, which is made up of state legislators, law enforcement, health officials, pharmacy representatives, state and local agencies and education providers.
A priority of the Task Force is to advance legislation to help combat prescription drug misuse and diversion. In 2013, the Task Force helped to pass legislation requiring the Indiana Medical Licensing Board to write rules on proper opioid prescribing. Since the emergency rules took effect in December of 2013, Indiana has seen an almost 11% decrease in the amount of opioids being prescribed to patients.
Several other Task Force accomplishments include its partnership with the Indianapolis Colts to heighten awareness of this epidemic; the launch of its "Train the Trainer" public outreach program; the free online course titled "The Opioid Epidemic and Indiana's Opioid Prescribing Law" ; drug take-back events; and the 85+ outreach seminars/webinars presented to prescribers statewide since the implementation of the opioid prescribing laws.
To help warn Hoosiers about the dangers of prescription drug abuse, the Attorney General's Office created www.BitterPill.IN.gov, which offers helpful resources, including:
Speaker presentations can be found here.