Last Week Tonight Television

John Oliver takes on opioids in discussion of America’s addiction epidemic

"Alternative pain treatments should be at least as easy to find as Waffle Houses, which, like heroin, are both hazardous to your health and dangerously addictive."

John Oliver tackled the subject of opioid addiction on Sunday’s Last Week Tonight, focusing on America’s prescription drug epidemic. “Unfortunately, America is now in the midst of a new drug crisis, and it seems that no one is safe from it,” Oliver said, revealing that some 30,000 Americans die from prescription drug overdoses every year. Big Pharma companies like Perdue, which makes OxyContin, used shady marketing in the 90s and downplayed addiction to patients. Perdue eventually had to pay out $634 million in damages in 2007 and there are other companies like it that have been investigated, but investigations will not stop the addiction epidemic overnight. “At a certain point, the question has to become less ‘What did we do wrong?’ and more ‘What do we do now?'” Watch the clip to see what Oliver has to say.

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