Reporter finds voices of prescription drug abuse

About Andrew Van Dam

Andrew Van Dam of The Wall Street Journal previously worked at the AHCJ offices while earning his master’s degree at the Missouri School of Journalism.

In an ongoing series, reporter Elaine Grant of New Hampshire Public Radio has worked to inform the public about prescription drug abuse in the state and to put personal faces on all facets of the epidemic, from addict to dealer to physician. She also addresses possible solutions, noting that New Hampshire is one of 11 states that don’t have a prescription monitoring program, a fact Grant attributes to lobbying by the state pharmacy board and privacy advocates (who also oppose a collection program for unwanted prescriptions).

The first four stories in the series have already been filed:

While there is no shortage of solid reporting on the scope and impact of the problem, the real stars of the series are Grant’s anecdotal sources: a recovered addict who ran away from home at age 15 and for years easily swiped prescription drugs and anything and everything else that could make her high, a young mother who deals a few pills to make ends meet, a 70-year-old man who sold his entire prescription every month because he needed the money even more than he needed the pain relief, a college kid who fed his opiate addiction by going from doctor to doctor and hospital to hospital and a doctor who prescribes to suspected addicts because he fears them.

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  1. Pingback: Reporter finds voices of prescription drug abuse | Official Heroin Helpline

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