A Sip of Morphine: Uganda’s Old-School Solution to a Shortage of Painkillers

November 25, 2019

(NPR) – In the United States, drugmakers have flooded the market with powerful, sophisticated opioids. And that’s fueled an epidemic of addiction. But across Africa many patients can’t afford even mild painkillers — let alone medications to help people in extreme pain. Uganda has come up with a solution that goes back to basics with one of the world’s original painkillers: morphine.  The government mixes a powdered form of the drug with water to create a drinkable analgesic that officials say has provided patients with effective relief without giving rise to widespread addiction. Just as important, it’s cheap.