WNPR

addiction

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

Cities across the state have struggled to crack down on mismanaged "sober houses" -- residences where people with addiction can pay to live in a drug and alcohol free environment.

Aetna, one of the nation's largest insurance companies, says that starting in March it will remove what's been a key barrier for patients seeking medication to treat their opioid addiction. The change will apply to all its private insurance plans, an Aetna spokeswoman confirmed. Aetna is the third major health insurer to announce such a switch in recent months.

frankieleon / Creative Commons

Yale researchers say treatment for opioid addiction should start in hospital emergency departments. Results from an ongoing study released Monday find positive long-term benefits.

Chris Vaughan / Creative Commons

The Connecticut General Assembly is considering a bill that would raise the legal age for buying and using tobacco products from 18 to 21.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

The opioid epidemic in our nation upends lives and it’s the family members of addicts who intimately know the deadly costs of substance abuse.

This hour, we hear the personal story of one Connecticut mother and son. Despite the many hurdles addiction placed in their way, we hear how they are now working to help other families overcome these same hurdles.

Keoni Cabral / Creative Commons

How mental illness is treated across our nation could change under a new federal law.

This hour — the Mental Health Reform Act — what is it and what does it mean for mental health and substance abuse treatment in our state?

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

The number of deaths from heroin and synthetic opioids continues to rise in New England, according to data just released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Harriet Jones / WNPR

President Barack Obama signed into law on Tuesday the 21st Century Cures Act. The new legislation contains $1 billion in funding to combat the opioid addiction epidemic. Connecticut activists say that it's vital this state secures its fair share of the money. 

Patrick Skahill / WNPR

Naloxone is a lifesaving drug that can reverse the effects of an opioid overdose. Efforts have been made in the current opioid epidemic to make it more widely available, but the medication's rising price is complicating that. 

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

Residents of Southeastern Connecticut held a vigil Thursday night in Montville in response to a string of local overdose deaths this past year.

ehpien flickr.com/photos/91499534@N00 / Creative Commons

U.S. Senator Chris Murphy is praising House passage on Wednesday night of the bipartisan Mental Health Reform Act. 

Karen Brown / NEPR

About a dozen miles off the coast of Cape Cod sits a rustic island named Penikese — part of the Elizabeth Island chain. A hundred years ago, Penikese was home to a leper colony, then a school for troubled boys and a bird sanctuary. This past fall, Penikese opened to its newest incarnation — a treatment program for opioid addicts.

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

Sherwood Taylor, a longtime Hartford resident who was attempting to overcome 50 years of addiction to heroin, died earlier this month of causes unrelated to drug overdose. He was just shy of 76 years old.

WNPR profiled Taylor earlier this year. 

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

Police departments in New England and around the country are scrambling to respond to the opioid addiction crisis.

Jeng_Niamwhan/iStock / Thinkstock

Why are some people more susceptible to addiction than others? How does genetic makeup influence a person’s chances of becoming an addict? This hour, we find out how researchers at Yale University and The Jackson Laboratory are working to better understand the science of addiction. 

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

The Veterans Administration is attempting to reduce the number of former service members suffering opioid abuse and overdose. The VA is now part of a working group with the Department of Defense trying to take a comprehensive look at the problem. 

Karen Brown / NEPR

Massachusetts is one of about 40 states where someone who abuses drugs or alcohol to an extreme can be legally committed to a locked treatment facility. In most cases, a worried family member has to go to court to make that happen.

On the final day of June 2015, Colin LePage rode waves of hope and despair. It started when LePage found his 30-year-old son, Chris, at home after an apparent overdose. Paramedics rushed Chris by helicopter to one of Boston's flagship medical centers.

Doctors revived Chris' heart, but struggled to stabilize his temperature and blood pressure. At some point, a doctor or nurse mentioned to LePage that his son had agreed to be an organ donor.

"There was no urgency or, 'Hey, you need to do this.' I could see genuine concern and sadness." LePage says, his voice quavering.

The Connecticut Opioid Response Team and the state’s Alcohol and Drug Policy Council have supplied Governor Dannel Malloy’s administration with a plan to tackle Connecticut’s opioid crisis.

Nancy Wong/Wikimedia Commons, The White House/Creative Commons / WNPR photo illustration

Drug epidemics are not new in the United States. But there’s something very distinctive about the demographics of this latest wave, which centers around opioid and heroin abuse. It cuts across socio-economic and racial divides. 

elhombredenegro / Creative Commons

Tech giant Yahoo and the Democratic National Committee have been some of the latest organizations to fall victim to high profile hacks. But cyber attacks are also a very real threats to small businesses – many which call Connecticut home.

This hour, we talk cyber security -- how to prevent hacks and stay secure. 

Inmates with substance abuse issues face the highest risk of relapse, or fatal overdose, within the first few weeks of being released from incarceration. Research shows that 80 percent of former inmates with opiate dependence issues will relapse within a month of leaving jail. 

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

Ken Aligata of the Connecticut Community for Addiction Recovery ran through an inspection of a sober living home in the quiet, picturesque neighborhood of Clinton, Connecticut. Seven people with addiction who are in recovery currently live there, and Aligata wants to make sure it’s a safe environment.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

This hour, as part of WNPR’s week-long reporting series on the opioid epidemic, we explore racial disparities within the context of America’s crack cocaine and opioid crises

frankieleon / Flickr Creative Commons

Illicit use of prescription drugs has almost tripled among high school students in southeastern Connecticut. That's according to the Southeastern Regional Action Council.

Pages