Last updated: September 14, 2020
Drug abuse is a growing epidemic in the city of Atlanta. In 2012, the city ranked sixth in Forbes’ list of the most dangerous cities in the country. What makes the city more prone to drugs is the fact that it is a tourist destination and an education center. It is the seventh most visited city in the US and has over 30 universities and colleges.
The abuse of prescription drugs including synthetic opioids had decreased to 2.8% in 2013. However, the low record seems to have been due to their exclusion from the testing panel. The Department of Transport lately added opioids such as Hydrocodone, oxycodone, and hydromorphone to the drug-testing panel citing increased abuse among employees.
Hydrocodone is one of the opioids that is fast growing into an epidemic. The number of seized items that had the drug increased from 564 in 2011 to 641 in 2012. Center for Disease Control and Prevention also indicates a rise in drug overdose deaths.
Cocaine abuse has significantly decreased over the years. Only 10.5% of those abusing cocaine sought help in Atlanta Rehab centers. The number had steadily declined from 12.8% in 2010. The number had dropped further to 9.2% by the end of the first half of 2013. A fact not revealed by these statistics is that most cocaine abusers in the past ten years are aged between 24 and 35 years.
Georgia’s Poison Control Center and State Medical Examiners reported a decline in the number of cocaine-related poisonings and deaths between 2010 and 2013 financial years. Moreover, reports from the National Forensic Laboratory Information System showed little change in the number of cocaine found in seized items. It had been 22.5% in 2012, but this dropped slightly to 22.3% in 2013.
Heroin abuse is on the increase in the city of Atlanta and is more prevalent among young adults. They made up 57.7% of all who were admitted in 2011 seeking primary heroin treatment. The number increased over the years to 58.4% and eventually to 63.6% in 2012 and 2013 respectively.
Heroin trafficking is rapidly increasing in Atlanta. The number of items that the NFLIS found to have heroin in in 2011 was 328. They rose to 512 in 2012 and finally to 700 in 2013. Ethnographic reports also showed that the South American and Mexican heroin types were the most available at the retail level.
It is the most widely abused drug in Atlanta City, where it is still considered illegal. However, the number of those seeking treatment for marijuana treatment had dropped from 17.3% in 2011 to 16.1% in 2013. The Arrestee Drug Abuse Monitoring Program, Atlanta Chapter, reported a reduced positive urine test among local arrestees.
Meth, as it is commonly known, is becoming the most increasingly abused drugs in Atlanta. The statistics show that the number of those seeking meth treatment had increased steadily between 2011 and 2013, from 5.7% to 6.8%. Its trafficking has also been on the rise with the amount of meth in seized items increasing to an all-time high in 2013.
Sources show that alcohol is the most used drug in Atlanta comprising nearly half of all those seeking treatments. It is a leading secondary drug used by marijuana and cocaine users. The combination of alcohol and other drugs causes the highest drug-related deaths in the city.