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Ogden Hospital Expands Youth Drug Treatment Program

Ogden Hospital Expands Youth Drug Treatment Program

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OGDEN, Utah (AP) -- An Ogden hospital is setting up a new treatment program to serve a rapidly rising number of young adults abusing prescription drugs.

The Ogden Regional Hospital program, aimed at people aged 18 to 22, will begin January First.

Mike Ashment, director of the hospital's Alcohol and Chemical Treatment program, says drug abuse cases have exploded this year. He says he had only 15 patients in that age group in 2003, but so far has had 35 cases this year.

The new program is tailored specifically to young adults, who didn't fit in with regular treatment programs intended for older populations.

Ashment says abuse of prescription drugs like OxyContin has become fashionable among youths. And, since they are legal with a prescription, he says the drugs don't carry the same stigma as others.

(Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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