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Confronting America’s opioid epidemic

The opioid epidemic has become the deadliest drug overdose crisis in US history. But there are real solutions.

The current drug overdose crisis in America, fueled by the opioid epidemic, has already been linked to more than 700,000 deaths since the late 1990s — more deaths than the number of people who live in big US cities like Denver and Washington, DC.

In response to the crisis, lawmakers have responded with an array of new policy solutions, focusing on everything from the prescription of opioid painkillers to expanding access to addiction treatment.

But some policy solutions work better than others. Since 2017, Vox has worked to put a bigger spotlight on the policies that work — showing that there really is a way out of the opioid epidemic, albeit one that will require policymakers to take the issue more seriously and dedicate more resources to the task.

These stories are the results of Vox’s efforts, detailing policy interventions spanning North America, from Vermont to California to British Columbia, Canada.

To share your own stories, feel free to email Vox’s lead opioid reporter, German Lopez, at german@vox.com.

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