A Hulu limited series inspired by the New York Times bestselling book by Beth Macy.
Journalist Beth Macy's definitive account of America's opioid epidemic "masterfully interlaces stories of communities in crisis with dark histories of corporate greed and regulatory indifference" (New York Times) -- from the boardroom to the courtroom and into the living rooms of Americans. In this extraordinary work, Beth Macy takes us into the epicenter of a national drama that has unfolded over two decades. From the labs and marketing departments of big pharma to local doctor's offices; wealthy suburbs to distressed small communities in Central Appalachia; from distant cities to once-idyllic farm towns; the spread of opioid addiction follows a tortuous trajectory that illustrates how this crisis has persisted for so long and become so firmly entrenched.
Beginning with a single dealer who lands in a small Virginia town and sets about turning high school football stars into heroin overdose statistics, Macy sets out to answer a grieving mother's question-why her only son died-and comes away with a gripping, unputdownable story of greed and need. From the introduction of OxyContin in 1996, Macy investigates the powerful forces that led America's doctors and patients to embrace a medical culture where overtreatment with painkillers became the norm. In some of the same communities featured in her bestselling book Factory Man, the unemployed use painkillers both to numb the pain of joblessness and pay their bills, while privileged teens trade pills in cul-de-sacs, and even high school standouts fall prey to prostitution, jail, and death.
Through unsparing, compelling, and unforgettably humane portraits of families and first responders determined to ameliorate this epidemic, each facet of the crisis comes into focus. In these politically fragmented times, Beth Macy shows that one thing uniting Americans across geographic, partisan, and class lines is opioid drug abuse. But even in the midst of twin crises in drug abuse and healthcare, Macy finds reason to hope and ample signs of the spirit and tenacity that are helping the countless ordinary people ensnared by addiction build a better future for themselves, their families, and their communities.
"An impressive feat of journalism, monumental in scope and urgent in its implications." -- Jennifer Latson, The Boston Globe
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Journalist Beth Macy’s acclaimed investigation proves that the most shocking thing about the opioid crisis is how easily it could have been prevented. Exposing the crooked dealings and deadly missteps that led to the epidemic, Macy draws on her years covering the rising prescription-drug problem in Appalachia. She offers a searing, ground-level view of the impact that opioids have had on marginalized communities and unpacks Purdue Pharma’s aggressive marketing strategies for OxyContin—showing how the company knowingly ignored clear, indisputable evidence of the drug’s addictiveness. Macy paints a vivid portrait of the pharmaceutical execs (and even doctors) concerned only with corporate greed and free gifts, but she also introduces us to a variety of warriors fighting the epidemic. Her narration crackles with her zeal, making Dopesick—now adapted into a streaming show—into a riveting and explosive listen.
An honorable story on an American trajedy
A difficult but too truthful book.
Irish pir queen,
You are so wrong in your statement of “ if taken as directed opioids are not addictive”
If taken as directed, even if you follow that to the t these meds loss there effectiveness due to people becoming tolerant to that dose. Which in turn means they need more and more to get the same relief that was had at the lower original dose!
Do I believe people in real pain are becoming causalities of the opioid epidemic, yes. However they eventually become just as addicted as the heroin junks on the street! They just get legal prescriptions from a doctor.
I have been a nurse for 22 years and some of that time spent in a pain clinic.
Many studies have proven the same pain relief with ibuprofen as Vicodin and Percocet.
Full of info; boring narration
There’s so much detailed info in this well researched book. I wish i had purchased the ebook and not the audio version. The narrator, who i believe is the author, reads quickly and monotonously, with barely a pause between long sentences. I believe books like this need and deserve narrators with a bit of the actor in them. This narration put me to sleep. Listener beware.