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Hawaii is one of the most iconic locations in the United States. Our home consists of what dreams are made of. Many people fail to look beyond the shining seas, majestic mountains and swaying, ancient palm trees. Local knowledge will tell you that Hawaiians possess a mighty sense of community. In such tight-knit communities, the affects of alcoholism and drug abuse are felt by many. The challenges reverberate throughout this paradise. Looking for rehabilitation center? Palm Partners is here to help.

The professional team Palm Partners Recovery Center treats every individual attention and respect. We create custom recovery programs to ensure the best recuperation. Contact us today.

Data shows that those 26 and older particularly need – and aren’t receiving – drug and alcohol detox and rehab in Hawaii. If you’re using and abusing drugs or alcohol, call Palm Partners Addiction Detox and Rehab now for immediate help: 888-499-2162. Get into the right facility and transform your life. Our professionals are standing by, 24/7.

What you should know

Crystal meth, cocaine, heroin, marijuana and club drugs are the major threats in Hawaii. Airline passengers, shipping companies and the U.S. postal service are the primary means for transporting drugs into the state.

Compared to other states

  • Illicit drugs overall – among the highest for those 26 and older, moderately high for those 18-25
  • Pharmaceuticals – moderately high for those 26 and older, moderately low for those 18-25
  • Marijuana – moderately high for those 18 and older
  • Cocaine – average for those 26 and older, moderately low for those 18-25
  • Alcohol – average for those 26 and older, moderately low for those 18-25

Source: SAMHSA’s most recent National Survey on Drug Use and Health, based on 2008-2009 annual averages. SAMHSA is the Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration, part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

A closer look


Ice the drug of choice. Powder meth is converted into ice before distribution in Hawaii. Most of the crystal meth is produced in Mexico and California. Then Mexican drug trafficking organizations transport it via mailed parcels and couriers on commercial flights. Eventually, the drug lands in night clubs, street corners, hotels, public areas, raves and private residences throughout the islands. Major traffickers in Hawaii are Asian syndicates comprised of Koreans, Filipinos and Chinese who smuggle meth onto Guam and Saipan.


Second most significant drug threat with use among Hawaii’s youth on the rise. Although the primary supply is produced locally, BC Bud from Canada is increasingly smuggled into Hawaii.

Hawaii remains the major U.S. producer of high-grade cultivated marijuana. Home-grown marijuana remains a staple for local demand and for export to the mainland. Medical marijuana certificates permit local users to cultivate several plants at their residences for personal consumption. Marijuana is abundant, and use is perceived by the local population as normal.


Third greatest drug threat. The tourist industry perpetuates demand. Readily available, cocaine is frequently used with other drugs such as alcohol, heroin and marijuana — and often distributed with other drugs.

Media attention given to meth has led to an increase in cocaine use, due to the perception that cocaine is easier to distribute without detection. The drug trafficking organizations are usually Mexican, Samoan and African American and, to a lesser degree, Asian. The drug is smuggled into the Hawaiian islands via airports, postal and mail delivery services and inter-island shipping.


A substantial problem.


Hydrocodone one of most abused drugs. “Doctor shopping” is the primary source. But the drugs also come from prescription forgeries and falsification as well as employee theft from drug inventories.


Mostly black tar heroin. Honolulu International Airport is the primary entry point. Mexican organizations supply wholesale quantities to local trafficking organizations and independent distributors. The drug is available on the street and in illegal gambling establishments in Honolulu. In Hawaii County, the drug is mostly in rural areas where veterans live.

Club drugs

Biggest problem for military population. MDMA (Ecstasy) is smuggled from the mainland via the mail and incoming flights. Then small quantities are available in bars, nightclubs and rave parties. PCP and ketamine are not easily available. LSD is rarely seen except at raves on Oahu, while GHB is available in limited quantities, mostly on Oahu and Maui.

Percentage of Hawaii population using/abusing drugs

AGE1 18+
Past Month Illicit Drug Use2 7.19
Past Year Marijuana Use 8.55
Past Month Marijuana Use 5.17
Past Month Use of Illicit Drugs Other Than Marijuana2 2.64
Past Year Cocaine Use 2.03
Past Year Nonmedical Pain Reliever Use 3.40
Perception of Great Risk of Smoking Marijuana Once a Month3 40.36
Past Month Alcohol Use 51.62
Past Month Binge Alcohol Use4 24.38
Perception of Great Risk of Drinking Five or More Drinks Once or Twice a Week3 43.19
Illicit Drug Dependence2 1.29
Illicit Drug Dependence or Abuse2 1.99
Alcohol Dependence 4.34
Alcohol Dependence or Abuse 9.19
Alcohol or Illicit Drug Dependence or Abuse2 10.08
Needing But Not Receiving Treatment for Illicit Drug Use2,6 2.11
Needing But Not Receiving Treatment for Alcohol Use6 8.99
Serious psychological distress 8.18
Having at least one major depressive episode7 5.02

1 Age group is based on a respondent’s age at the time of the interview, not his or her age at first use.

2 Illicit Drugs include marijuana/hashish, cocaine (including crack), heroin, hallucinogens, inhalants or prescription-type psychotherapeutics used non-medically. Illicit Drugs Other Than Marijuana include cocaine (including crack), heroin, hallucinogens, inhalants or prescription-type psychotherapeutics used non-medically.

3 When the Perception of Great Risk in using marijuana or alcohol is low, use of marijuana or alcohol is high.

4 Binge Alcohol Use is defined as drinking five or more drinks on the same occasion (i.e., at the same time or within a couple of hours of each other) on at least 1 day in the past 30 days.

5 Dependence or abuse is based on definitions found in the 4th edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV).

6 Needing But Not Receiving Treatment refers to respondents needing treatment for illicit drugs or alcohol, but not receiving treatment at a specialty facility.

7 Major Depressive Episode is a period of at least 2 weeks when a person experienced a depressed mood or loss of interest or pleasure in daily activities and had a majority of the symptoms for depression as described in the DSM-IV.

Source: Condensed version of the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 2004 and 2005, from SAMHSA, Office of Applied Studies.

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