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U.S. House Committee Holds Mass. OxyContin Hearing

OxyContin and heroin addiction in Massachusetts was the focus of an impassioned special U.S. House subcommittee hearing at the State House Monday.

The U.S. House Judiciary Subcommittee on Commercial and Administrative Law, which will review the state's ongoing efforts to curb the addiction problem and what the federal government can do to help, heard from state lawmakers, parents and former addicts.

One former addict, Melissa, said she overdosed twice before getting help.

"Today I am a mother, a wife, a taxpaying citizen, a registered voter, and none of these would be possible if I was not in recovery," she said.

Massachusetts lawmakers are calling for passage of state legislation that would expand substance abuse programs and tighten controls on prescription drugs. They also called on federal officials to devote more resources to the problem.

Before the hearing, U.S. Rep. William Delahunt said the OxyContin and heroin addiction problem isn't limited to Massachusetts. He said Washington needs to better understand how it can aid states and local communities in curbing the problem.

This program aired on April 12, 2010. The audio for this program is not available.

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