Prescription for Success Impact

Of the nearly 5 million adults in Tennessee, an estimated 221,000 (or 4.56%) have used pain relievers, also known as prescription opioids, in the past year for non-medical purposes.

  • 69 thousand are addicted and require treatment.
  • 151 thousand are using prescription opioids in ways that could be harmful and may benefit from early intervention strategies.

The abuse of prescription drugs, specifically opioids, is an epidemic in Tennessee which has resulted in:

  • overdose deaths
  • emergency department visits
  • hospital costs
  • newborns with Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome
  • children in state custody
  • people incarcerated for drug-related crimes


This strategic plan developed by the Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services is in collaboration with other state agencies impacted by the prescription drug epidemic.

Partner agencies include:

  • Tennessee Department of Health
  • Tennessee Department of Children's Services
  • Tennessee Safety and Homeland Security
  • Tennessee Department of Correction
  • Bureau of TennCare
  • Tennessee Bureau of Investigation
  • Tennessee Branch of the United States Drug Enforcement Agency

Click to view the Executive Summary
Click to view the Introduction
Click to view Section One: The Overview
Click to view Section Two: Current Efforts
Click to view Section Three: Future Plan
Click to view Prescription for Success Achievements