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Attorney General Conway Takes Keep Kentucky Kids Safe Message to Scott & Anderson Counties

March 25, 2014
National Journal

Nationally, prescription painkillers are the leading cause of accidental death in the United States. In 2012, there were about 220 million doses of the highly addictive painkiller hydrocodone dispensed in Kentucky. Additionally, a report by the nonprofit Trust for America's Health lists Kentucky as having the third-highest rate of fatal overdoses in the country - the vast majority from prescription pills.

Heroin, however, is rapidly replacing prescription painkillers as the drug of choice in many parts of Kentucky because it is also an opiate, it's cheaper to get, and it mimics the same high people get from crushing and injecting opioid painkillers. According to the Kentucky Office of Drug Control Policy, statewide heroin overdose deaths increased by 650 percent in 2012. In December, General Conway, along with Sen. Katie Stine and Rep. John Tilley, announced bipartisan legislation created to stop this disturbing trend. The bill, which was introduced during the 2014 regular session of the Kentucky General Assembly, increases punishment for heroin traffickers, promotes treatment for addicts, and increases public awareness and education.

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