In Crisis, Again by Molly Cook-Escobar
Over a century before the mis-marketing of OxyContin dominated news outlets, the nation faced its first widespread opioid epidemic. The emergence, exploitation, and eruption of both epidemics follow the same arcs in history, yet the de-escalation of the 19th century epidemic has faded into distant memory and recovery from the most recent has yet to be seen.
During the first epidemic, pharmaceutical companies and federal regulations laid the groundwork for the stigmatization of opioid addiction that created an isolating environment for those struggling with opioid dependence today. Accessible recovery in conjunction with de-stigmatizing what was left by the earlier epidemic is needed to prevent future devastation and build a system that can prevent history from repeating itself once again.
Alleviating future escalation of the modern opioid crisis requires understanding the onset of the first opioid epidemic, sympathizing with the physiology of addiction, and making proven treatments such as MAT, or Medication-Assisted Treatment, widely available. In Crisis, Again visualizes each of these factors necessary for the nation’s recovery and tells the story of opioid’s overwhelming grip on the United States since its inception.