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Too much? One state's anti-opioid videos have a 'horrific' feel

Should other states follow suit, or take a different approach?

Is this too over the top, or would you consider it appropriately scary, given the seriousness of the subject matter?

Officials in Arizona have launched an anti-opioid campaign that they say targets the state’s adolescents with a pair of videos showing teens trapped inside a pain pill and behind hypodermic needles that are made to look prison bars.

The videos have a "horror movie feel," said Dr. Cara Christ, the director of the Arizona Department of Health Services.

But they're coming under some scrutiny from critics, who say the state could take a less expensive approach to targeting opioid abuse, and that scare tactics often are not an effective deterrent for teen drug use.

The videos’ target audience is youth ages 12 to 17. The $400,600 campaign set to run through June is being financed with an appropriation from the Arizona Legislature meant to develop an educational, graphic campaign about opioids, which include highly addictive medications like oxycodone pills and the illicit drug heroin.

“There is a scary component (here)," Christ said. "People don’t realize how dangerous and how addictive these medications are.”

Another graphic scene in the videos shows a lifeless hand beside a bottle of prescription pills.

With information from The Associated Press.

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