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• One of every eight Americans has a significant problem with alcohol or drugs, with 40 percent of the group having a "dual diagnosis," or concurrent mental/nervous disorder;

• Approximately 27 million Americans either use illicit drugs regularly or are "heavy drinkers." Of these almost 16 million are estimated to need immediate treatment;

• By age eighteen, almost 12 percent of all young people are illicit drug users;

• An untreated alcoholic’s medical costs are approximately 300 percent higher than non-alcoholic’s medical costs;

• Approximately 70 percent of illegal drug users are employed and contribute significantly to workplace absenteeism, accidents and injuries, decreased productivity, increased insurance expenses, employee turnover costs and on-the-job violence;

• The estimated annual direct cost to our society resulting from substance abuse is more than 250 billion dollars;

• It is generally accepted that chemical dependency, along with associated mental health disorders, has become one of the most severe health and social problems facing the United States.*

* Source: SAMHSA (U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration)

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