The director of the White House’s National Drug Control Office visited San Diego on Saturday to announce the administration’s plan to address the methamphetamine crisis, both by increasing resources for drug treatment and by continuing the cross-border smuggling operation.
San Diego is still the main corridor for methamphetan, which comes from Mexico, and Dr. Rahul Gupta was given a tour of the border drug tunnel in Otai Mesa before discussing the White House plan at a news conference.
The the new plan includes proposals to continue working with law enforcement and governments in the United States and Mexico to reduce the amount of methamphetan transported across the border by creating new task forces that focus on methamentamine use as needed.
Many proposals also address the relevant crisis caused by fentanyl, a potent synthetic opioid that is increasingly penetrating illicit drug shipments, including methameth.
From a public health perspective, the plan also aims to provide greater access to long-term rehabilitation treatment, test strips for individual users to check for fentanyl, and naloxone, which acts as an opioid antidote and may alter the effects of an overdose. .
As the first physician to perform this role, Gupta stressed the importance of providing medical care and treatment for drug addiction in the fight against metamethyl.
“If we have so many people dying from methamphetamine, including fentanyl, we need to make sure we help people when and where they need it,” Gupta said.
Further, the plan calls for increased access to prevention activities in schools in counties that have high levels of poverty and metamethanol use, as well as low levels of employment and education, including among tribal nations.
Nationally, Gupta said the number of people dying from metametine is growing at a very rapid rate – about 32,000 people every 12 months.
“It results in a life of lost methamphetamine every 16 minutes around the clock,” he said.
Between 2016 and 2020, there was a 92 percent increase in methamphetanal-related deaths in San Diego County, according to the latest San Diego shock report. released last year. In 2020, San Diego had 722 metametric-related deaths, nearly half of them between the ages of 45 and 64.
“They are only second only to death from a fentanyl overdose,” said District Attorney Summer Stefan. “But the new trend we’re seeing is that methamphetamine and fentanyl are combining, and it’s causing a new epidemic. We see how both of our most dangerous substances combine. ”
The amount of methamentamine transported across the border and confiscated by law enforcement is also growing. During the 2021 fiscal year, customs and border guards arrested 114,000 pounds met along the California-Mexico border, accounting for 63 percent of all metametine seized along the southwestern border. According to officials, much of it goes through entry ports on vehicles.
Already in the current financial year, the seizure of methamentamine at the California border exceeds the same figure in the previous year: from October to March was seized 57,900 pounds.
This includes 1,336 pounds of methamphetamine seized by officers in Otai Mesa, valued at $ 2.9 million. disguised as an onion mixed with the present in the shipment of the tractor-trailer earlier this year.
The Meth Strike Force was launched more than 25 years ago when San Diego was a major producer of methamphetamine, said Nick McKione, director of the county’s health and social services agency. He serves as chairman of the task force along with Stephen and County Deputy Chief Administrative Officer Holly Porter. Mexico is now the main source of drugs produced in “superlabs” run by cartels.
Despite the work the task force has done, Marchionne told a news conference Saturday that there is still a long way to go to address the issue.
“We are no longer the capital of methamphetan in the world, but we still have huge problems,” he said. “We need more help at the federal level, and I think it will come.”
Although black and Native Americans make up a small portion of the population in San Diego, they make up a disproportionate portion of metametine-related deaths.
Last year’s Meth Strike Force report found that in 2020, for every 100,000 San Diego residents, there were 49.6 black and 46.2 Native Americans who died from drugs. This is compared to 26.2 and 14.2 deaths among whites and Hispanics, respectively.
Gupta said these populations are seeing the greatest increase in methamphetanal use and related deaths, as well as the least likely to receive timely treatment for addiction. To combat this, his office is working to ensure that by 2025 universal access to drugs for opioid-related disorders is available. combating the use of metbut the new plan supports research to develop an antidote.
“Less than one in 10 Americans who want to can access treatment, and I want to change that,” Gupta said. “This change will be very important because we need to use justice as a guideline for moving forward.”