Numbers in the news

Shelly Le

16 million

Number of Americans age 12 and older who had taken a prescription pain reliever, tranquilizer, stimulant or sedative for nonmedical purposes at least once in 2009.

400

Percent increase in substance abuse treatment admissions for prescription pain relievers between 1998 and 2008.

8

Percentage of high school students who reported non-medical use of Vicodin in a 2010 survey.

22

Percentage of 252 Whitman students surveyed who have taken prescription drugs without a prescription.

54

Percentage of those Whitman students surveyed who took prescription drugs without a prescription, that took them for study-enhancement purposes.

35

The number of states with operational prescription drug monitoring programs in May 2011.

120,000

Average number of Americans that go to the emergency room every year after overdosing on opioid painkillers.

1800

Number of pharmacies robbed nationally between 2008 and 2011.

Sources: National Institute on Drug Abuse, The New York Times, Pioneer  survey of 252 students, USA Today, The Christian Science Monitor.