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The Opioid Crisis in America

Harvard University via edX

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Opioids are a drug class that includes the illegal drug heroin as well as powerful pain relievers, such as oxycodone, hydrocodone, codeine, morphine, fentanyl, and many others. In 2016 more than 42,000 people died from overdoses involving opioids, and 40% of all opioid overdose deaths involved a prescription opioid. Every day in the United States more than 1,000 people are treated in emergency departments for not using prescription opioids as directed. On average, 115 Americans die every day from an opioid overdose. Drug overdose is now the leading cause of accidental death in the U.S., and opioid addiction is driving this epidemic.

This course challenges preconceptions about addiction and about who can become addicted to opioids. Our main goals are to reduce the stigma that exists around addiction, help prevent overdose deaths and encourage people to learn about the multiple pathways to treatment. You will learn about these topics from a variety of medical experts and hear from people who have experienced addiction themselves, or who have lost a family member to an overdose.

This course is available for Continuing Education credit. Enroll in the course to learn more about options for earning credit.


Lesson 1: How has opioid misuse evolved and spread? Why is this a public health crisis in America?
Lesson 2: Are opioids "bad" drugs, or are there appropriate ways to use them?
Lesson 3: What counts as misuse and what can happen when you misuse opioids?
Lesson 4: How does opioid addiction affect an individual, their family, and the community?
Lesson 5: How can opioid overdose be treated and prevented?
Lesson 6: How can opioid misuse and addiction be treated?
Lesson 7: What does the process of long-term recovery from opioid addiction look like?

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Review for edX's The Opioid Crisis in America
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Nour J
5.0 2 years ago
by Nour is taking this course right now, spending 5 hours a week on it and found the course difficulty to be medium.
I have just started the course. It seems that the course as the title says is primarily focused in USA however the information is very valuable and interesting to medical professionals.
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