tv Washington Journal Sam Quinones Discusses the Opioid Epidemic CSPAN July 18, 2017 11:44am-12:00pm EDT
current 60 votes. even parts of full repeal need 60. eight democrats controlled the senate. crazy. and over in the house today legislative work starting in about 15 minutes. four bills on the agenda today, including one that would delay the implementation of an obama era rule on ozone standards and two measures dealing with the construction of hydroelectric power plants. those expected throughout the day today. some of the problems coming to an agreement on health care have to do with proposed cuts to treating drug addiction. we spoke earlier with an author who wrote a book about the opioid epidemic in the u.s. by provider.atellite >> "washington journal" continues. sam quinones, journalist and author of the book "dreamland," joins us today as we return to the topic of opioid addiction in america.
get to the book, want to ask about something you wrote on your blog recently. said they are writing about heroin is another way of writing bout america, who we are and what we have become. can you explain that. guest: sure. this began to occur me me in the middle of the project. wonder why it was that this problem was really but also appalachian, why it was affecting charlotte and indianapolis and places that did very well years, e last 20 or 30 not rust belt areas. what was common denominator? began to understand the common denominator was our own writing and you were about bigger topics than drug trafficking. is as a crime reporter. i thought i was writing a book trafficking from mexico and marketing and stuff like that, all of that is
part of the story. but i think beyond that, it gets become, we've been isolated, fragmented, done enormous amount to destroy in this country. the dreamland title comes from in the town of the ohio ohio on river. once it was the thing that held the town together, everyone saw each other, that is where you up, it was a place everyone came together and formed community, it was sustained by sustained by good but own, a main street, once that went away, once that all went away, it was savaging societal immune system left places vulnerable. in rust belt e area, destruction of community, but again, in wealthier areas, suburban areas, everyone is community , suburban
architecture is almost designed it that, technology, while connects superficially does a lot to separate us. of the reason i thought writing about heroin is who we have become as country people. host: as we have this conversation, ask the viewers to join in. been affected by opioid addiction, please call in well.d us a tweet, as 202-748-8000 is the number if you want to call in, you can at c-span wj. if you are a medical professional, phone number for morning, 202-748-8001. all others, do want you to join conversation, 202-748-8002. in port oned dreamland viewersohio, what should know about mexico? uest: yes, part of my book deals with the guys who first
the heroin traffickers who first figured to that very aggressive push promote pain pill prescribing buyingoctors and doctors to that idea would lead vast new heroin market and the guys who figure that out and saw emerging in columbus, ohio, and areas around there, various cities around there, cincinnati, wheeling, west like that, aces these guys developed a system by then, developed in the west all the markets that they broke into eventually static number of addicts all from the same town. one town in this particular, i think played a very important role in this, the halisco.he town is retail ys figured out model of selling heroin by tenth of a gram similar to pizza
so you call, you order, they would send a driver hits of heroin to you near where you live. their model, th initially developed it on western side of the united were , number of addicts static, they become master marketers, they couldn't kill from the , we are all same town, they know where each other's mother's live, they eliminate the 't people in the way back der world do dating to al cap one, they had to become master marketers and there was way of discounting, dump away free in front of back one to al cap one, they had to become clinics, give away free to guys that just got out jail. bring me 50 characters, i will give you free balloons. key moment, they jump the river for the first time, one guy in particular i talk to in the book, jumped the river, land in columbus, just as a massive new underway by
pharmaceutical companies and pain specialists in the area of ohio, west virginia, kentucky to promote narcotic killers vicodin, oxycontin, as new solution to pain. this creates huge new number of there to d they are then service those addicts once they can no longer afford those looking for something cheaper. host: so you have the story of towns like port smith, ohio, the drug traffickers and you just mentioned it, what should know about purdue pharma? guest: purdue pharma was crucial in forming what we have today, the drug purdue pharma creates was crucial in all this. reasons.all, for two urdue pharma used a very aggressive form of marketing to octors, giveaways, similar to
marketing techniques the halisco pharma used toue convince doctors that these ills were no longer addictive, particularly oxycontin was no longer addictive and they would prescribing it to patients. and they gave away stuff, they anymore, but for seven years of the drug's life, hey gave away stuff, trips and a cd called "swing in the right oxycontin," th where, when you got swing band tunes, a very aggressive, marketing to doctors to convince them that this was fine to do. also, oxycontin was a crucial contain use it did not abuse deterrent for the first 14 years of their life. get addictd and take their tolerance to high levels and then they would be a cheap, potent alternative and heroin proved to
be that, particularly the heroin halisco proved to be crucial alternative. chart show viewers this of drug overdose deaths from 980 to 2016, rising to 59,000 to 65,000 people in the united 2016, when is your story that you talk about in this book takes place, what years? i would say the mid-'90s, 2014, d the book in in those years, i would say, you seeing, then of course when i was writing the book, i'm a reporter.crime i knew the most innovative and quick, fast-changing part of our is the under world, also new.hing into something i knew part of the story would continue to evolve and morph came out, that is lso what has happened with the
emergence of fentnyl to drugs using.are host: the book is "dreamland," sam quinones is here for the next 45 minutes to take comments. and dave up first in denver, colorado, on the line for those good ed by opioids, morning. caller: good morning. this is dave in denver, colorado. yeah, dave. caller: i hear everyday how we're treating my granddaughter addict, it is heartwrenching and breaking, everyday we talk about them on this drug or that drug, when you hear it how span, they talk about suicide drop, overdoses have 30%, you never hear them mention that, it is always, you scared to hey are face that marijuana is a cure admit it.on't want to
host: sam quinones, talk about that. sorry to e, yes, i'm hear about your granddaughter, this story is going on across crushing, and torture, to so many families across the country. i think there are early signs one way of his is transitioning people off opioid, medical marijuana, i torture, think we've , shed into medical marijuana though, we need to be more cautious and humble about the uses of this and in fact, the potential, what might we legalize marijuana, certainly all kinds of marijuana nationwide. i mean, marijuana varies widely i adays, different from when was a kid and growing up in southern california, marijuana back then.ld now it's extraordinarily intense, there is also a big
kind of of what marijuana actually is good for medical purposes. you arijuana that makes most high with thc, high levels thc, the element that makes you high in marijuana, from my read suggest not always the one contains medical benefits, it is cbd elements in marijuana actually are what keep -- benefits.medical i would be cautious. here, what i wrote about massive amount of legal drugs as unleashed on the country to very great and dire nightmarish consequences. also worth keeping hat in mind, as well host: maryland, warren is a medical professional, good morning. good morning. i have a question i want to ask gentleman over there and i would like him to address three areas for me. area is poverty.
can you please explain how big role in this and especially when it comes to urban areas?n in ve in baltimore, i work washington, d.c. and the other area i want you to address is ability of prescription drugs. if you walk through the streets of altimore and the streets washington, d.c. in areas, you prescription, nt pain killers, just in the $5, $10, you know, for they just everywhere. the big one is the criminal justice system. this one, i think needs to be $5, essed because people go to a lot of these jai different things and when they find jobs.hey can't because record in whatever they ccumulate from drugs or whatever situation, keep following them and as a result, population, we
cannot find jobs -- go back to because they get frustrated and depressd and we situation l with the everyday. any way to address this? host: before sam quinones question, what kind of medical professional are you? aller: -- have degree in addiction. host: appreciate the questions. questions.e are huge and i thank you for bringing them up. is certainly this belt/poverty st stricken areas, in rural areas, kentucky, west virginia, virginia, eastern pennsylvania,tern those areas, kind of roughly you , my ground zero, if like. those , i mean, i think were areas right for this, a lot of place where is doctors had
solutions, not just to people's physical pain, but to well. economic pain, as doctors were, the people you had to go to if you wanted workers' ssdi, social security, disability, supplemental ssi, is ty insurance, another one you needed a doctor to sign off on, area where is acutely aware of the pain people were suffering physically, as well, was mically, i think that one reason why pharmaceutical companies went to the areas in those promoted areas, they saw area where is prescribing already pills and amenable to the and acutely aware of in these ings were areas. t is important to know today, that is not always the case. mostly in well-to-do suburbs you find these problems. this is not only rust belt
areas, appalachian, charlotte, north carolina, salt lake, indianapolis, all over the country, the common denominator is not economics, it s, i believe, one common denominator is race. while it's common and true to drugs do not a white ate, this is very rarely lem, you find -- baltimore may be an rule, but to the across the country, you are finding mostly white people, certain ericans to a degree, as well. i would say in answer to your yes,r question, >> more on our website c-span.org. click the series tab and select "washington journal." or find it by name using the search bar. take you live now to the house about ready to start legislative work for the day.