Prevention of substance abuse will require a multipronged approach, Elizabeth Tracey reports


1.2 million overdose deaths by 2029 in North America. That’s the sobering projection of a recent Lancet study. Eric Strain, a substance use disorders expert at Johns Hopkins, says an all encompassing strategy beginning early in life makes sense to him.

Strain: We pay lip service to the social determinants of health. But when it comes to drug abuse, we really aren’t focusing our resources and energy in that way. That’s a tragedy, even for people who don’t necessarily develop a fentanyl habit but use some cannabis and don’t enter the workforce, and don’t engage in healthy relationships, and have other problems that maybe we consider a lower grade, you know we’re losing a life that way. How do we maximize the opportunity for people to lead meaningful and purposeful lives? :33

Strain hopes that providing opportunities and correcting problems throughout the lifespan will enable people. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey