Addiction Recovery Blog

Facing Addiction: Points from the Surgeon General’s Report on Addiction

[fa icon="calendar"] Nov 25, 2016 / by Russ Kallina

Russ Kallina


Recently the Surgeon General of the United States released a report on Addiction in America titled, “Facing Addiction in America.”  This is an excellent resource for anyone searching for information on substance use disorders.  It covers diverse topics such as neurobiology, prevention, treatment, recovery and current health care systems.  It also lays out a vision for the future of how American can address the increasing epidemic of substance use disorders.  The full report can be found at: 


Some highlights from the report: 

  • “In 2015, over 27 million people in the United States reported current use of illicit drugs or misuse of prescription drugs, and over 66 million people (nearly a quarter of the adult and adolescent population) reported binge drinking in the past month. Binge drinking for men is drinking 5 or more standard alcoholic drinks, and for women, 4 or more standard alcoholic drinks on the same occasion on at least 1 day in the past 30 days.”
  • “It is estimated that the yearly economic impact of substance misuse is $249 billion for alcohol misuse and $193 billion for illicit drug use.”
  • “Despite the social and economic costs, this is a time of great opportunity. Ongoing health care and criminal justice reform efforts, as well as advances in clinical, research, and information technologies are creating new opportunities for increased access to effective prevention and treatment services.”
  • “Most Americans know someone with a substance use disorder, and many know someone who has lost or nearly lost a family member as a consequence of substance misuse. Yet, at the same time, few other medical conditions are surrounded by as much shame and misunderstanding as substance use disorders.”
  • “Substance use disorder treatment in the United States remains largely segregated from the rest of health care and serves only a fraction of those in need of treatment. Only about 10 percent of people with a substance use disorder receive any type of specialty treatment.”
  • “Over 40 percent of people with a substance use disorder also have a mental health condition, yet fewer than half (48.0 percent) receive treatment for either disorder.”

Hopefully this report will increase the dialogue about substance use disorders and encourage those in need to seek treatment.  Our team at Aquila Recovery stands ready to continue our work to support the goals set forth in the Surgeon General’s Report.

Topics: Insider

Russ Kallina

Written by Russ Kallina

Russ Kallina is Aquila Recovery of Virginia's Program Director of Operations.

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