The Cost of Addiction To Society
Lack of public and professional education, diagnosis and treatment of addiction has huge costs to society. Otherwise useful people lose their careers and become a financial burden to society. Their families are destroyed. Society further suffers from the crimes committed to enable addicts to purchase their drug of choice. Historically, addicts were committed to mental institutions for shock treatment and lobotomies to cure their addiction, regardless of other consequences.
Currently we are more humanistic and deal with the problem of addiction by incarceration, with few exceptions. The cost of prison well exceeds the cost of professional diagnosis and treatment and it does not solve the problem. The disease does not go away in jail and the addict is quite likely to repeat the same crimes once they have been released from jail.