Prescription medicine addiction on the rise
In recent years, we are seeing a surge in the number of Australians taking prescription drugs. This is leading to an increase in prescription medicine addiction. Evidence shows that opioid analgesics being prescribed to alleviate acute and chronic pain, as well as benzodiazepines to relieve stress and anxiety, are leading to addiction and in some tragic cases, death through overdose.
While these medicines are relatively safe and are used for correct medicinal purposes by many Australians, when used chronically, both opioids and benzodiazepines can be addictive.
In Victoria alone, newly released findings from the Coroners’ Court of Victoria highlighted how prescription drugs in general, and benzodiazepines in particular, consistently contribute to more deaths than either illicit drugs or alcohol. This continues to highlight the massive prescription medicine addiction problem we face and the urgency to introduce a Real Time Prescription Monitoring system.