#6 Beth Macy, how addicted is the USA?

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Journalist Beth Macy spent seven years researching the opioid epidemic - a crisis that has been going on in the United States for some 20 years now. She talked with police officers, social workers, paramedics and doctors as well as addicts and their relatives. The opioid epidemic began in doctors’ offices and hospitals in the 1990s. Back then the pharmaceutical company Purdue launched an aggressive ad campaign to roll out its painkiller Oxycontin. Drug overdoses are now the cause of some 100,000 deaths every year in the United States. About two-thirds of those deaths are attributed to opioids. Overall, the addiction leads to more deaths per year than gun violence and car accidents combined.