Prescription Overdose Summit Planned For Atlanta

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News Release: Associated Press News

ATLANTA (AP) -- Atlanta will host a meeting on the nation's growing epidemic of prescription drug abuse.

A group of politicians on Thursday announced the National Rx Drug Abuse Summit will be held in Atlanta in April. The third annual meeting will bring together health officials, doctors, educators, drug treatment providers and others to discuss ways to fight the problem. Two previous meetings were held in Florida.

Among this year's scheduled speakers is the actor Matthew Perry, formerly of the sitcom "Friends." He has acknowledged past struggles with prescription drug abuse.

More than 15,000 Americans die annually from prescription painkiller overdoses. Health officials say the problem has become an epidemic in the last 10 years.