• Hand cuffs on a page of fingerprints

    Carteret County Working to Reduce Rx Drug Diversion

    Carteret County Sheriff Asa Buck and District Attorney Scott Thomas announced in May the undercover drug operation called “Operation Pill Crusher,” which targeted illegal sales and diversion of prescription drugs and other illegal drugs. More than 80 people have been charged as part of the sales.  In the months ahead of the operation, detectives made hundreds of controlled purchases from over 100 drug dealers operating in Carteret County. “Prescription drug diversion results in increased criminal activity and drug addiction and this is one of the major challenges we face in Carteret County,” said Sheriff Asa Buck about last week’s convictions….

  • “Smart” Wristband Developed to Detect Drunkeness

    Students from the University of Washington have developed a wristband, called Vive, that monitors alcohol and dehydration levels, essentially telling wearers how intoxicated they are.  The designers claim the band can curb the likelihood of sexual assault and other compromising situations likely arise a club or party. Once the band detects you’re drinking, it will occasionally vibrate to “check in” with you.  All you need to do is squeeze the bracelet to let Vive know you’re still doing well and are in control.  If you don’t squeeze the band, your friends will be notified, so they can come find you and…

  • Cigarettes and lighter, extreme close-up

    Caremark Pressures Pharmacies to Abandon Tobacco Sales

    Some customers will soon be required to make a $15 co-payment on prescriptions filled at pharmacies that sell tobacco products, under new rules issued by Caremark, the pharmacy benefits management arm of CVS. The rules will encourage customers to fill prescriptions at CVS-owned pharmacies, which stopped selling tobacco products in September. This will also put financial pressure on other pharmacies that are part of the Caremark network to stop selling tobacco products. More than 54,000 pharmacies are part of the Caremark network, including more than 20,000 independent pharmacies. “For clients who choose a tobacco-free network, plan members would be provided…

  • Spilled pills and pill bottles

    DEA Expands Controlled Substance Take Back

    As of today, October 9th,  DEA will allow the transfer of unused or unwanted pharmaceutical controlled substances to authorized collectors for the purpose of disposal.  Authorized collectors will include:  manufacturers, distributors, reverse distributors, narcotic treatment programs, retail pharmacies, and hospitals/clinics with an on-site pharmacy.  Additionally, long-term-care facilities will do the same on behalf of residents or former residents of their facilities. “These new regulations will expand the public’s options to safely and responsibly dispose of unused or unwanted medications,” said DEA Administrator Leonhart.  “The new rules will allow for around-the-clock, simple solutions to this ongoing problem.  Now everyone can easily play a…

  • NCCU_James_E._Shepard_statue

    SAMHSA Awards Grant to NC Central to Address Alcohol, Drug Abuse, HIV

                                N.C. Central University plans to use a three-year grant to develop techniques for reducing rates of alcohol and drug abuse and HIV transmission among 18 to 24 year olds. The grant totals nearly $898,000.  The initiative known as the Campus Community Coalition taps the expertise of five academic departments within NCCU and two outside agencies. An initial phase of the project started earlier this year and involved on-campus surveys to explore prevailing habits and attitudes regarding sex and drug and alcohol use among young adults.  A…

News From The Field

Connection Between Early Age of First Drink and Heavy Drinking

Sep 29, 2014

“Our research suggests that teenagers who have their first drink at an early age drink more heavily, on average, than those who start drinking later on,” said Meghan E. Morean, assistant professor of psychology at Oberlin College, Ohio and adjunct assistant professor of psychiatry at Yale School of Medicine.  “Our work also suggests that how quickly teenagers move from having their first drink to getting drunk for the first time is an important piece of the puzzle.  In total, having your first drink at a young age and quickly moving to drinking to the point of getting drunk are associated…

Report reveals the scope of substance use and mental illness affecting the nation

Sep 15, 2014

A new report by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) provides insight into the nature and scope of substance use and mental illness issues affecting America.  The report shows that 24.6 million Americans aged 12 or older were current (past month) illicit drug users – 9.4 percent of this age group.  Marijuana was by far the most commonly used illicit drug, with nonmedical use of prescription pain relievers as a close second. The SAMHSA report also shows that 34.6 million adults aged 18 or older (14.6 percent of the population aged 18 or older) received mental health…

Consequences of Teen Alcohol, Marijuana Use Studied

Sep 12, 2014

Now a new study asked high school seniors to indicate whether they experienced various adverse psychosocial outcomes resulting from use of each substance.  The most alarming finding was that alcohol use was highly associated with unsafe driving, especially among frequent drinkers,” said Dr. Palamar, , PhD, MPH, a CDUHR affiliated researcher and an assistant professor of Population Health at NYU Langone Medical Center (NYULMC).  “Compared to non-drinkers, frequent drinkers were over 13 times more likely to report that their alcohol use has led to unsafe driving. Marijuana users, compared to non-users, were three times more likely to report unsafe driving as…