"Across the nation, heroin abuse has been increasing at dangerously high rates in recent years. Nationally, as many as 467, 000 people were reportedly abusing heroin or suffering from heroin dependence in 2012."
New York, June 12 - New York authorities have announced a statewide initiative to curb the rise of heroin use due to heroin sales and related heroin drug overdoses turning a widespread problem across the US state.
The multi-faceted approach includes addition of experienced investigators to the State Police Community Narcotics Enforcement Team, nearly doubling the number of troopers currently serving in the unit, to more aggressively combat heroin trafficking, Xinhua quoted New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo as saying in a statement Wednesday.
Today, New York State is taking a major step forward in the fight against heroin. By nearly doubling the State Police's drug enforcement units with the addition of more than 100 seasoned investigators we are going above and beyond to combat this deadly drug, Cuomo said.
The state will also launch an unprecedented effort to make supplies of naloxone, an emergency treatment that blocks the effects of opioids (any psychoactive chemical that resembles morphine or other opiates) on the body and can reverse the effects of an overdose, available to all first responder units in the state, he said.
He said providing supplies of naloxone to all first responder units and raising awareness through our State University of New York and City University of New York campuses will save lives in communities across the state.
The governor also announced a targetted awareness campaign on all public college and university campuses.
Across the nation, heroin abuse has been increasing at dangerously high rates in recent years. Nationally, as many as 467, 000 people were reportedly abusing heroin or suffering from heroin dependence in 2012.
In New York State alone, there were 89,269 cases of heroin and prescription opiate treatment admissions in 2013, a rise from 63,793 in 2004. During this same time period, the drug also disproportionately impacted New Yorkers ranging in age from 18 to 24.