Our answer is unlikely to be very popular.
The fact is that it is an incredibly difficult problem – and government bureaucracies, especially those that start on a national level, are just not very good at making stuff work.
There are many local and successful programs. Monies need to be funnelled to these programs for expansion, and the bureaucracy should exist solely to aid in measuring success of local initiatives and helping to share best practices.
Beyond that, the government should understand that this is not solely a healthcare crisis – it is a social crisis. People who are desperate, depressed, feeling lost and excluded – they will look for ways out of what is basically a miserable existence. Helping these people with both the physical addictions as well as the psychological and community issues is the only way that leads to a long-term fix.
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