Prescription drug abuse is a problem which is rife all over the world. The growth of the problem is said to have mirrored the decrease of heroin abuse, with prescription opiates becoming more of an issue than illegal narcotics – possibly due in part to availability – in many parts of North America. Australia is a country which has faced its own issues where prescription opioids such as oxycodone, buprenorphine and morphine are concerned, with its population of prescription opioid abusers far outnumbering the amount of heroin abusers. In South America, too, prescription opioid abuse is more common than heroin abuse.
Reports from the United Nations show that Germany is home to as many as 1.9 million abusers of prescription drugs, while prescription drug use problems of some form have been witnessed in African countries such as Madagascar and Namibia. In short – this is a global problem which does not show any signs of going away soon.