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NCJ Number: 251860 Find in a Library
Title: Just Science Podcast: Episode 52: Just Opioid Financial Burden on Crime Labs
Author(s): Paul Speaker
Corporate Author: Forensic Technology Center of Excellence (FTCoE)
United States of America
Date Published: July 2018
Page Count: 2
Sponsoring Agency: Forensic Technology Center of Excellence (FTCoE)
Research Triangle Park, NC 27709-2194
National Institute of Justice (NIJ)
Washington, DC 20531
Grant Number: 2016-MU-BX-K110
Sale Source: Forensic Technology Center of Excellence (FTCoE)
c/o RTI International
3040 Cornwallis Road
Research Triangle Park, NC 27709-2194
United States of America
Document: Audio (iTunes)|Audio (Google Play Music)|HTML
Type: Instructional Material (Programmed); Interview; Report (Grant Sponsored); Technical Assistance
Format: Audio (Online)
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This twelfth and final episode in the “Drugs Season” series of Just Science podcasts is an interview with Dr. Paul Speaker from West Virginia University, who discusses the high cost to crime labs of analyzing death from opioids.
Abstract: In addition to being a faculty member of the West Virginia University Finance Department, Speaker is the President of Forensic Science Management Consultants, which specializes in the business aspect of forensics. The first part of the interview focuses on the economics of crime labs generally. Speaker argues that crime labs must be managed in accordance with jurisdictional financial realities and limitations. With limited budgets, even small crime labs can be managed efficiently while maintaining quality of services; however, limitations on spending will inevitably affect the volume of work, but it should not impact the quality of the work that is done. In turning to crime laboratory costs in the midst of the opioid crisis, Speaker quantifies the impact the crisis has had on the budgets of crime laboratories. He estimates that currently crime labs are spending approximately $270 million annually on the analysis of opioid deaths. The discussion also notes that drug overdose death often involve multiple drugs, many of which are synthetic drugs that are difficult to identify. Speaker mentions that the opioid crisis is costly for the entire criminal justice and health systems of the country, as well as productivity lost from overdose deaths. He suggests that a focus on prevention and treatment is at the core of addressing this costly health and criminal justice issue.
Main Term(s): Forensic sciences
Index Term(s): Crime laboratory management; Death investigations; Designer drugs; Drug overdose; NIJ grant-related documents; NIJ Resources; Opioids
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