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BATTLING TEEN Rx ABUSE

Published Online: Saturday, March 1, 2008   [ Request Print ]

The White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) launched a major national awareness campaign on the dangers of teen prescription drug abuse with an ad during this year's Super Bowl—1 of 2 TV ads running on 27 networks nationwide.

Parents are the focus of the new campaign. "We need parents to recognize that not all drug threats to their teens come from the street corner. Prescription drugs are in practically every home, and parents can have an immediate impact on stopping teen prescriptiondrug abuse," said ONDCP Director John Walters.

Every day, 2500 kids aged 12 to 17 abuse a prescription painkiller for the first time, and more individuals are getting addicted to prescription drugs, according to the ONDCP. Drugtreatment admissions for prescription painkillers increased >300% from 1995 to 2005.

In addition to the TV spots, the $14-million effort includes print and online advertising, community outreach, and a tool kit to help community groups implement local prescription-drug abuse-prevention efforts. Targeted messages are being included on prescription information sheets for commonly abused substances in 15,000 pharmacies nationwide.

Resource materials for parents and teens can be accessed through the ONDCP campaign's Web site: www.TheAntiDrug.com.

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