The Guardian: Can the UK stop the looming opioid crisis?

This Page was last reviewed and changed on June 1st 2021

While we tend to complain about long waiting times in hospitals and not getting treatment on time, this podcast from The Guardian shows a different side of the story – shedding light on the negative effect of prescription drug accessibility and the impact it has on addiction.

For an expert evaluation, Ian Sample turns to Nicky Hari, one of UKAT’s counsellors who battled an addiction to opioids after receiving medication for multiple knee surgeries. She explains that although opioids don’t give you a “buzz”, you do get addicted to the feeling of tranquillity and the stress slipping away. She elaborates: “the washing machine feeling in your head of all your thoughts going around just stops, and that’s what you get addicted to”.

An anonymous caller, responding to Ian’s query on whether we should be prescribing opioids so frequently, adds that it’s too accessible: “It’s as easy as calling up the surgery and then it’s in the chemist the next day,” she says.

Listen to the audio below to find out more about the debate on prescription medication and what this means for patients:

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