There is a growing trend among older adults in regards to at risk use for alcohol, prescription medication and illicit drugs. It is estimated that there are 78 million baby boomers (those born between 1946 and 1964) in the United States. The number of older adults in need of substance abuse treatment is predicted to increase from 1.7 million in 2001 to 4.4 million in 2020.
As healthcare moves towards becoming more integrated with behavioral health there is an opportunity for screening and identification of substance abuse. Screening, ideally could be a routine part of routine care. This could help diminish the lack of awareness that is often a barrier to identification of this issue.
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