A recent article in the Texas Tribune on methamphetamine use and treatment in Texas quotes extensively from Dr. Jane Maxwell, a research professor at the School of Social Work’s Addiction Research Institute.
“We’re in the middle of a methamphetamine epidemic,” said Maxwell in the Texas Tribune article. She has recently released a report (pdf) that summarizes 2015 substance use trends in Texas.
The report states that methamphetamine use indicators (such as poison center calls, treatment admissions, and deaths) are high in Texas. Since 2013, methamphetamine has been the drug most commonly reported by forensic laboratories, outranking both cocaine and cannabis. The Drug Enforcement Administration ranks methamphetamine as the #1 threat in the Dallas area, #2 in the Houston area, and #4 in El Paso area. Customs and Border Patrol reports show that methamphetamine seizures are up by 260 percent along the western part of the Texas border with Mexico, and up by 420 percent along the eastern border. Methamphetamine is dissolved in water to be imported into the United States, and laboratories on the Texas side convert into Ice. The increased availability of the drug has led to a decrease in prices: an eight-ball that cost $400 in the summer of 2014 was selling for $225 in February 2015.