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Home https://server7.kproxy.com/servlet/redirect.srv/sruj/smyrwpoii/p2/ Health https://server7.kproxy.com/servlet/redirect.srv/sruj/smyrwpoii/p2/ While millions spend on combating the opioid epidemic, the meth crisis is growing quietly in Wisconsin

While millions spend on combating the opioid epidemic, the meth crisis is growing quietly in Wisconsin



  While millions spend on combating the opiate epidemic, the meth crisis is quietly rising in Wisconsin

Parker Shore / The Cap Times

Opioid addiction women can live sober lives at Pathways Opportunity House Dodgeville, Wis. the only sober residential house in the county. Here, Jessica Shepard points to a book where residents check in and out. Shepherd is addicted to opioids and meth and says meth use is common in southwestern Wisconsin. Only those with opioid dependence can live in the home – a restriction on health care providers and service providers says it hinders their ability to cure addiction. Shepherd says the desire for meth is intense and very difficult to escape. In some ways, meth is more difficult to treat than opioids. Long-term care is especially important for the treatment of drug addiction, but providers say there is a shortage of such services in the state. Photo taken on October 3, 2019.

Wisconsin meth cases are ballooned by 450 percent. Service providers and health officials say more money is needed to combat it.

Jess Priszilski has never coped with losses. Then her children's father was killed in a car accident. In 2011, her friends offered her meth to help ease her grief.

Shortly after, Prizbilski lost his job. Her two children were taken from her once, and then again when she was caught making a drug test. The growing rap sheet overshadows her college life as she loses cars, ties – and almost life.

"It was a one-off thing and it was," says Pszhibilski, who lives in Chippeva Falls in northwestern Wisconsin, telling her meta addiction.

"It started slowly, but it was a pretty solid downward spiral for about five years … It's where it just takes over your life and it's no longer fun.

Like other amphetamines, metal increases the levels of dopamine in the brain, creating a rush. But it's far more powerful than stimulants like cocaine, says Timothy Iskar, director of human services at Chippewa County.

Meth can keep people awake for days, causing psychosis and even organ failure.

While the widely known opioid epidemic killed 3,800 people in Wisconsin between 2014 and 2018, the surge in meth use has quietly replaced opioids in the western and northern states, according to health care providers and employees.

The State Criminal Laboratory has processed 1,452 meth cases in 2018 – an increase of over 450% since 2008. The number far exceeded 1,055 cases of heroin processed by the laboratory that year.

On October 4, federal authorities in Madison announced that 16 people from Wisconsin and Minnesota were accused in state and federal cities of allegedly distributing meth in the Wosau area.

Unlike some states in the Midwest, where police close hundreds of meth labs a year, in Wisconsin the problem is more hidden. Much of the meth used here originates in Mexico and is transported to twin cities, according to a 2016 analysis of methamphetamine use and trafficking by federal and state law enforcement.

The drug may be in the form of powder, crystals or pills and may be smoked, snored or injected.

Sheila Wakes, director of drug abuse services at the Marshfield Clinic's Family Health Center, said that when she began to treat addiction in central and northern states in the 1980s, Nervous Pills, Marijuana , cocaine and heroin are the most common. Then in the early 90's meth appeared. Its prevalence increased and then disappeared when the opioid epidemic struck.

Now she is seeing again an increasing number of people with metal addictions.

Robert Morrison, executive director of the National Association of State Directors for Alcohol and Drug Abuse, says the resumption of his meta is reminiscent of the movie "Jump Day." Ironically, some people use the method to help with opioid withdrawal. Others use it because it is cheap and affordable.

"It's about the noise," Iskar says. "People use drugs for the buzz and people get the most bang for their buck with (meth)."

Financing heroin and pills – but not meth

Because of the release guidelines, more more than $ 60 million in state and federal dollars that have been released to combat opioid abuse cannot be used to mitigate this new crisis.

Health care providers say they should be given flexibility in how to use these funds.

"There must be vendors in the trenches every day who have a voice at determining what the needs are, "says Saima Chauhan, manager of the clinical team at the Journey Center of Mental Health in Madison. "We are the ones who, every day … see people and families suffering so much from the effects of addiction."

Morrison says widespread addiction to pain pills and heroin has prompted Congress to direct a "historic investment" to combat the opioid epidemic. According to the federal budget, Congress has allocated at least $ 6 billion over the past five years for prevention, treatment and research.

Wisconsin received $ 63 million in federal subsidies specifically targeted at opiate prevention and drug treatment, according to the state Department of Health.

Morrison says the nation has been faced with "shocking conditions" and needs to "shake the system". He believes that the impetus is "extremely useful".

But his group of drug addicts prefer more flexible guidelines, saying that states are in the best position to decide where to spend money.

"The goal is to maintain additional resources in the system," he says.

As is, most people in Wisconsin who need substance abuse treatment do not receive it yet. Less than 10 percent of the 397,000 dependents from 2016 to 2017 have been treated according to the latest national study on drug use and health.

The Unified Mental Health Services of Iowa and Grant counties received funding from a federal grant to combat opioid abuse, according to agency director Jeff Lockhart. Although funds can be used to pay for a wide range of services, including detoxification and domestic services, the grant guidelines require that funds be used only for opioid use disorders.

"We are very, very pleased to receive these funds. These allow us to do things that we would otherwise have difficulty doing, "he says. "But in contrast … it leaves other substances without the same level of funding, so ultimately a mismatch occurs."

About 40% of Wisconsin drug prevention and treatment funds come from the federal government. The rest is provided through county and state programs such as Heroin, Opioid Prevention and Education. Although initial HOPE benefits have created several opioid treatment centers, recent grants have expanded treatment to include meth.

Доклад от 2018 г. на държавната комисия за лечение на злоупотреба с наркотични вещества препоръчва дори по-губи ограничения, позволяващи лечение за всякакъв вид злоупотреба с вещества.

Около 22 000 души на възраст 12 и повече години в Уисконсин използва мет през 2016-17 г., според най-новото федерално проучване за употреба на наркотици. По-ранните проучвания не питаха конкретно за мет.

Други щати, включително съседните Минесота и Айова, имат дори по-високи проценти на употреба.

Но използването на мет се увеличава в позицията като окръг Клер Клеър, където броят на свързаните с мет дни затворническо легло е нараснал повече от осем пъти между 2011 до 2015 г.

Употреба на метали, увеличаване на случаите

В съседен окръг Чиппева, нарастването на употребата на мет се отразява в броя на децата, настанени в извън домашни грижи от Защитни служби за деца. През 2014 г. 28 деца бяха изведени от домовете си. До 2018 г. този брой е нараснал до 115 деца – 93% от които са били отстранени по причини, свързани с мет, казва Кари Кербер, мениджър на деца и семейства в окръг Чиппева.

Две от тези деца са настанени в дома на Марси и Джери Линдбом в Chippewa Falls, поставен в приемна грижа поради използването на родителите им.

Марси Линдбом вижда въздействието на мета и на работното място. Като учител в 4-ти клас в училищния квартал на Chippewa Falls, тя отделя време всеки ден, занимавайки се с травми, които са преживели нейните ученици. Някои от тях са неподправени и нефокусирани; други заспиват, защото не могат да си починат у дома.

„Това е като камък в езерце“, казва Линдбом. „Ефектът от пулсация на мет може да не се чувства подходящ, освен ако не е някой наистина близък до вас, но тази пулсация все пак достига до всички хора в нашия окръг.“

Децата могат да бъдат пряко засегнати от употребата на родителите им, метаболизирайки наркотика вдишвайки го или абсорбирайки остатъците му през кожата им, казва Кербер. Когато се пуши, метът е като цигарен дим, но по-тежък. Стига се навсякъде, вкопчена в мебели, дрехи и спално бельо, казва тя.

Мет се отправя на юг

Тъй като опиоидите заемат централно място, Джоуни Чаухан казва, че мет се е „скрил в килера“ в южната част на Уисконсин, отчасти поради по-малкия риск от предозиране. [19659010] "Започва да се трупа на юг", казва Чаухан. „Това е уисконсинско нещо, сега не е просто северозападно от Уисконсин.“

Кимбърли Хил управлява трезва жива къща за жени с опиоидни зависимости в Доджвил в югозападната част на Уисконсин. Отне много време тези субсидии да достигнат до района, казва тя. Без подобни услуги хората, борещи се със зависимостта, отиват само на това.

„По принцип бялото го закопчавате и минавате през него с надеждата, че засегнатите членове на семейството ви не са се отказали от вас“, казва Хил.

Три жени, които понастоящем живеят в Opportunity House на Recovery Pathways, казват, че са използвали опиоиди – и мет. Казват, че употребата на метад е широко разпространена в югозападната част на Уисконсин, с малко възможности за лечение. Това е единствената къща за възстановяване в окръг Айова, със следващото най-близкото съоръжение в Медисън, на един час разстояние.

Безвъзмездните средства, които финансират къщата, изискват парите да бъдат използвани за услуги, свързани с опиоиди, което доведе до това, че Хил трябва да се обърне хора далеч, защото нямат квалификационна зависимост.

Хил казва, че желанието за мет и опиоиди е изтощително емоционално и физически. Джесика Шепърд започна да живее в къщата за възстановяване преди около месец. Тя казва, че желанието за мет – което тя използва ежедневно, тъй като го е опитала за първи път – е много трудно да избяга.

Ашли Бийч използва мет отчасти, за да има повече енергия по време на работните нощни смени. Тя работеше нощи, за да се грижи за децата си и сега е бременна. Децата не са разрешени в повечето къщи за възстановяване, но Хил казва, че няма да накара Бийч да напусне, след като се роди бебето.

Съоръжението се финансира по програма на Университета на Уисконсинската школа по медицина и обществено здраве. Бриджит Мушон-Хъмфри, програмен директор на Югозападната програма за действие на общността на Уисконсин, Inc., помогна за написването на субсидията, която обхваща графствата Айова, Лафайет, Грант, Зелен и Ричланд. Тя казва, че групата е определила опиоиди, тъй като наркотикът е бил в центъра на вниманието.

But now they are worried about meth, too.

“People will just bounce to a different drug, and meth seems to be the drug people are bouncing to. That’s always been the case, it always will be the case,” she says.

Treatment for meth elusive

In some ways, treating an addiction to meth is more difficult than opioids.

There is no FDA-approved medication to help with meth withdrawal. And it can take an entire 28-day program to withdraw, making patients unable to focus on treatment, says Corina Fisher, behavioral care therapist at Prevea Health in Chippewa Falls.

Fisher says longer-term programs that span months to a year are “very beneficial” for recovery, especially for meth, which has a high relapse potential. However, providers say there are few options for inpatient or long-term care, a dearth of substance abuse counselors and lack of training in how to treat meth addiction.

“In some ways, we focus more on the opioids because there’s ways to solve the problem. There’s medications, there’s watching how you’re prescribing it … but with meth, we have very limited options of how to fully stop it,” Fisher says. 

Jess Przybylski sat in jail for four months until a bed opened up at an inpatient treatment facility. Accessing treatment is even harder for those who are not arrested, says Przybylski, who has since regained custody of her children. 

Przybylski says that without longer-term help like she received, many people leave treatment programs and go back to the life they were living before. The women at the recovery house in Dodgeville agree, saying they likely would have relapsed had it not been for Recovery Pathways. 

“If you get out and you don’t have anywhere to go, where are you going to go? Back to what you’re comfortable with and back to where you were using,” Przybylski says. 

This story is part of a public affairs reporting fellowship sponsored by Madison’s the Cap Times newspaper. As part of the fellowship, Parker Schorr is embedded in the Wisconsin Watch newsroom for nine months focusing on in-depth stories of statewide interest. The nonprofit Wisconsin Watch (www.WisconsinWatch.org) collaborates with Wisconsin Public Radio, Wisconsin Public Television, other news media and the UW-Madison School of Journalism and Mass Communication. All works created, published, posted or disseminated by the Center do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of UW-Madison or any of its affiliates.


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