Methamphetamine: A National Response

In recent months, newspapers and television news specials across the United States chronicled the devastation that methamphetamine use and production impose on individuals, families, and communities. The 2003 U.S. National Household Survey on Drug Use and Health reported that 12.3 million Americans ages 12 and older tried methamphetamine at least once in their lifetimes and 1.3 million reported using meth in the past year. According to the Drug Abuse Warning Network, drug abuse-related emergency department visits involving amphetamines and methamphetamines increased 54 percent between 1995 and 2002. Methamphetamine, along with other addictive substances such as marijuana, cocaine, and heroin, can ruin lives, wreck communities, and destroy hope.