INDIANAPOLIS (Legal Newsline) - Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller and the Indiana Prescription Drug Abuse Prevention Task Force announced a new website Friday to provide information about the abuse of prescription drugs.
The website, available at www.BitterPill.in.gov, is part of an upcoming public awareness campaign in Indiana targeting the state's epidemic of prescription drug abuse. Zoeller's office announced the website at the Indiana State Fair.
"Statistics show that abuse and misuse among all age groups is a serious problem in Indiana and that's a bitter pill for our state to swallow," Zoeller said. "Whether you are seeking ideas on how to talk to your teenager about whether they are abusing prescription drugs, searching for help for yourself or a loved one or just want to know how to properly dispose of your unwanted medications, this new website serves as a one-stop shop. I believe consumers need to be armed with information and the right resources so we can try to put an end to this epidemic."
According to the Indiana State Department of Health, there were 718 deaths in Indiana from accidental drug overdoses in 2011, an increase from 654 deaths the previous year. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, more people abuse prescription drugs in the U.S. than hallucinogens, heroin, cocaine and inhalants combined.
The new website includes features on knowing the dangers of prescription drug abuse, dealing with addiction, proper prescription disposal, clinical resources and information on how to report illegal activities.
Zoeller's office and the task force plan to announce more details about the awareness campaign later in August. Zoeller launched the task force last year to significantly reduce the abuse of controlled prescription drugs and to lower the number of deaths related to the drugs in the state.
Since January 2012, Zoeller's office took action against more than 15 doctors for prescribing addictive painkillers outside of what is considered appropriate medically.