First Report on Painkillers, Addiction and Overdose to Air Tuesday, February 25 on “World News with Diane Sawyer”
ABC News will produce and present a series of reports, “Coming Home: America’s Promise,” that will investigate the most important issues facing veterans returning from battle. ABC News’ Chief Global Affairs Correspondent Martha Raddatz, Anchor and Correspondent Bob Woodruff, Anchor and Chief National Correspondent Byron Pitts and others will report their findings on “World News with Diane Sawyer.”
In a collaboration between ABC News and The Center for Investigative Reporting (CIR), Pitts uncovers a new generation of veterans getting addicted to and overdosing on narcotic painkillers prescribed by doctors at the United States Department of Veteran Affairs (VA). Dr. Basimah Khulusi, a whistleblower who worked at the Kansas City VA Medical Center, tells Pitts and CIR Reporter Aaron Glantz that she grew increasingly alarmed by the numbers of veterans referred to her who were addicted to painkillers and who sometimes had been prescribed multiple opiates at very high doses. Justin Minyard, a decorated 34-year-old Army infantryman who served in both Iraq and Afghanistan, says he lost everything – his family, his job, his home – when he became addicted to opiates prescribed by the VA. From the Veterans Health Administration, Special Assistant of Clinical Operations Dr. Gavin West reveals the VA’s latest plan to combat the problem.
The “Coming Home: America’s Promise”series will air on “World News with Diane Sawyer” weekdays on ABC at 6:30 p.m., ET beginning with Pitts’ package on Tuesday, February 25. Michael Corn is the executive producer.
Portions of this series will also be available on ABCNews.com, ABC News Radio, and ABC’s local affiliates.
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