HARLAN, Ky. (AP) - Kateena Haynes has seen how prescription drug abuse has reshaped Eastern Kentucky.
The director of the Harlan County Boys and Girls Club told The Lexington Herald-Leader that two winters ago, the parents of 13 children in her after-school club died of drug overdoses in one six-week stretch. In eleven of those cases, the children saw a parent die.
And the drug abuse hurts the communities in many other ways as well.
In 2010, inpatient and emergency room charges related to drug overdoses totaled $78 million, much of it paid by taxpayers.
This fiscal year, the state budgeted $35.5 million for substance-abuse treatment.
Officials say drug abuse is behind many domestic violence and child abuse cases. And it plays a role in why most people end up behind bars.