This October marks the second annual National Substance Abuse Prevention Month – an observance to highlight the vital role of substance abuse prevention in both individual and community health and to remember those who have lost their lives to substance abuse. The Office of National Drug Control Policy joins President Obama in celebrating National Substance Abuse Prevention Month and encourages prevention efforts this month and all year long to ensure the health of teens and young adults.
Millions of Americans suffer from substance abuse, which includes underage drinking, alcohol dependency, non-medical use of prescription drugs, abuse of over-the-counter medications, and illicit drug use.
This abuse touches all aspects of our communities and contributes to an estimated $193 billion in crime, health, and lost productivity costs.3
Prevention strategies targeting the root of the problem are essential to curb drug use and help people lead healthier lives. Early intervention helps prevent substance abuse and reduce the negative consequences of addiction before they occur. Through community-based efforts involving youth, parents, educators, and government officers, we can strengthen the support systems that deter our Nation’s young people from drug consumption and improve both academic performance and workforce readiness.
Each dollar invested in an evidence-based prevention program can reduce costs related to substance use disorders by an average of $18.3 Recognizing the power of prevention, the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) released the 2012 National Drug Control Strategy (PDF, 69 pages) in April to advance the Administration’s prevention efforts. The Strategy includes new developments in efforts to reduce drug use and its consequences and outlines a research-based blueprint to reduce the rate of drug use and drug use consequences by 15 percent over five years (2010-2015).
Throughout National Substance Abuse Prevention Month, ONDCP will orchestrate Federal prevention activities and support participation in the observance within states and communities.
For more information:
1 Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. (2005). Drinking in America: Myths, Realities, and Prevention Policy. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. Retrieved December 20, 2011, from http://www.udetc.org/documents/drinking_in_america.pdf
2 Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). (2011). Results from the 2010 National Survey on Drug Use and Health: Vol. I. Summary of national findings, (Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality, NSDUH Series H 41, HHS Publication No. SMA 11 4658). Rockville, MD: SAMHSA.
3 Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP). 2012 National Drug Control Strategy. Washington, DC.
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