For Our Health & Safety: Joining Forces to Defeat Addiction


Report #169, March 2003


In this report, the Commission urges state leaders to develop a strategy for reducing the cost and misery of drug and alcohol addiction and expanding the quality and quantity of treatment. 

During its review, the Commission found that existing resources could be far better used if prevention, treatment and enforcement efforts were better coordinated, especially if high quality treatment programs were available for those who could most benefit and those imposing the greatest burdens on other public programs. 

The Commission recommends for the State to establish a council to develop, implement and monitor a unified strategy to cost-effectively reduce the expense, injury and misery of alcohol and drug abuse. The council would be comprised of talented and committed professionals and political leaders. The Commission also recommends for the State to set priorities for treatment, implement outcome-based quality control standards, coordinate and integrate treatment with other social services, and improve and expand substance abuse treatment programs to competently serve those who need treatment.