Children with certain medical conditions can now legally begin receiving medical marijuana in Connecticut. Governor Dannel Malloy signed legislation that extends the state’s medical marijuana program to minors for the first time. 

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. 

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David DesRoches has been traveling the state talking with students about how schools are handling the rise in prescription drug use among Connecticut teenagers.

If you vote in Massachusetts, you’ve probably had a least one debate with a friend this year about whether the state should allow marijuana for recreational use.

But have you looked at the mechanics of the legal marijuana industry that ballot Question 4 would create? We’ve summarized key elements, in case you don’t have time to read all 24 pages of the proposed act before voting on Nov. 8.

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. 

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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.

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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

Patrick Skahill

Patients and caregivers seeking the opioid-reversal drug naloxone can now get the medication without a doctor’s prescription. That’s thanks to a state law that went into effect one year ago allowing pharmacists to prescribe and dispense the drug. 

States that have legalized marijuana are contending with a new criminal tactic — smugglers who grow and process it for export to states where it’s illegal and worth a lot more.

If there were a hall of fame for criminals, it would have to include notorious Colombian drug kingpin Pablo Escobar.

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

Five states are voting this fall on whether marijuana should be legal, like alcohol, for recreational use. That has sparked questions about what we know — and don't know — about marijuana's effect on the brain.

Connecticut DEEP

State environmental police will now carry naloxone, a drug that blocks the effects of opioid overdoses.

Drug Enforcement Agency

The rate of accidental drug overdose deaths in Connecticut grew again in the first six months of 2016, and the lab drug fentanyl is playing a big role in that. 

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Connecticut’'s medical marijuana program is proving to be a success. The program has been up and running since 2014 with more than 12,000 patients and a growing list of certified doctors, according to the Department of Consumer Protection. 

A powerful drug that's normally used to tranquilize elephants is being blamed for a record spike in drug overdoses in the Midwest. Officials in Ohio have declared a public health emergency, and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration says communities everywhere should be on alert for carfentanil.

The synthetic opioid is 100 times more potent than fentanyl, the prescription painkiller that led to the death earlier this year of the pop star Prince. Fentanyl itself can be up to 50 times more deadly than heroin.

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Medicine to reverse drug overdoses and training on how to use it was offered Wednesday at an event in New Haven.

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Four years ago, Connecticut became the 17th state to legalize medical marijuana. By 2014, the state officially launched its medical marijuana program, making it possible for card-holding patients to buy the drug legally. This hour, we get an update on that program from Connecticut's Department of Consumer Protection Commissioner Jonathan Harris. We also hear from a Connecticut woman who saw how the program helped her husband, and we check in with doctors and dispensaries in the state. 

AUGUSTA, Maine - Maine Gov. Paul LePage has tweeted that reports of his "political demise are greatly exaggerated.''

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Doctors in Connecticut are working together to reduce the amount of prescription opioids prescribed after surgery. 

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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. 

When Phillip decided to stop using heroin, he knew sticking around home was a recipe for failure.

"It's just, like, a heroin epidemic on Long Island where I'm from. So I had to get away from that and now I'm in Prescott, Ariz.," Phillip says. NPR agreed not to use his last name because he is struggling with addiction and fears it might hurt his chances of future employment.

frankieleon / 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.

The Obama administration has denied a bid by two Democratic governors to reconsider how it treats marijuana under federal drug control laws, keeping the drug for now, at least, in the most restrictive category for U.S. law enforcement purposes.