I am not really sure I understand the reasoning behind this article (“Drug addiction is a serious epidemic, why don't we treat it like one? Jan. 11), which argues addiction research is dated.
There is a great deal of "research" on the laundry list of topics raised by this writer. I am not sure she reads the scientific journals in which they appear. For example a recent article in the New England Journal of Medicine cited much needed research that should be helpful for treating addiction. It is controversial and might not fit the author's pre-conceived notion of addiction, but it is research.
But, research takes resources. What needs to be asked of programs is what percentage of their budgets go to research versus compensation for upper level staff (like presidents and CEOs) of "not-for-profit" programs?. Now that is a good research question, especially when entry into those programs is cost-prohibitive for most and outcomes dubious.
Unless, of course, people like this author make sure that a high percentage of resources goes towards valuable "research," then this article is self serving.
The writer is assistant professor and director of marital and family therapy training at the Johns Hopkins Department of Psychiatry (retired) and assistant professor and director of education and training in addiction psychiatry, at the University of Maryland Department of Psychiatry (retired).