Ending the drug epidemic is my single most important priority. Opioid and methamphetamine abuse is destroying our communities. Four people die every day in Georgia from a drug overdose. This epidemic is ripping apart our families and getting worse. In 2014, Georgia had 1,206 overdose deaths. In 2015, Georgia had 1,302 overdose deaths. By 2016, that number had jumped to 1,394 overdose deaths.
In 80% of these cases, an opioid prescription started the victim towards abuse and death. To stop drug abuse, we need to stop the spread of the gateway drugs hydrocodone and oxycontin. Patients should be legally permitted to speak with their doctor about therapeutic forms of non-toxic and non-addictive alternatives like medical cannabis.
The first step is to get Naloxone, the anti-overdose medication, into the hands of thousands of Georgians. This will save lives. The U.S. Surgeon General agrees, stating that “knowing how to use naloxone and keeping it within reach can save a life.” We need to make this life saving treatment as readily available as the EpiPen.