A West Virginia University health policy expert says The Washington Post analysis of targeted markets for opioid distribution sheds further light on the fact that substance use disorder has many causes and consequences. Accountability for addiction rests not only with the individual, but within the social and economic context that create an environment conducive to drug access and abuse, according to Chris Plein, professor of public administration.
“Reframing this public health problem to include the responsibilities of pharmaceutical companies, pharmacies and health care providers is essential to finding strategies to alleviate this crisis. In addition, we need to appreciate the underlying factors in communities—what are often called social determinants of health that place individuals at risk of substance use disorder. In a rural state like West Virginia, we need to marshal our resources to address disparities caused by declining community capacity to provide services and programs, lack of access to health care and limited employment opportunities.” —Chris Plein, professor of public administration, WVU Eberly College of Arts and Sciences
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CONTACT: Chris Plein
Professor of Public Administration
WVU Eberly College of Arts and Sciences
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