America is experiencing an epidemic of opioid addiction. Opioids are powerful narcotics that were designed to ease pain.

In 2015, more than 33,000 Americans died from opioid overdose, more than any year on record. In fact, 6 out of 10 drug overdoses in the United States involve opioids.

In our Connect community, we are running a three-part series on how Blue Cross and Blue Shield is helping members who are struggling with opioid abuse.

The first article tells the story of a member who slipped into addiction and is fighting to recover.

The second article is a Q&A about our unique program designed to identify addiction and help members.

The third article discusses the differences between acute and chronic pain and how to talk to your doctor when asking for relief.