Thursday, October 6, 2016, “Knock Out Opiate Abuse Day”
This statewide single-day initiative on October 6, 2016 mobilized families, the prevention and treatment communities, concerned citizens and community leaders raising awareness of the potential for dependency on prescribed pain medicine and its link to heroin abuse rates in our state. This mobilization educated physicians and raised awareness among New Jersey citizens and families. A special thank you to the Sussex County Freeholders for proclaiming October 6, “Knock Out Opiate Abuse Day!”
Volunteers from The Coalition for Healthy and Safe Communities, Center for Prevention and Counseling and Sussex County Municipal Alliances from the Governor’s Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse canvassed Sussex County physicians equipped with information including “door knocker” PSAs and copies of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s new opioid prescribing guidelines. Doctors, dentists, oral surgeons and other prescribers were encouraged to implement these new CDC guidelines in their own prescribing practices. http://turnthetiderx.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/PocketGuide_FINAL6.pdf
We followed up after October 6 with a personalized letter mailed to many county prescribers visited that day encouraging them to call on us to continue to provide information for their patients to prevent, treat and recover from substance use disorders. Since then, we’re happy to report that physicians are calling and we are returning to their practices providing additional resources and successfully collaborating to increase awareness of addiction and improve the health of Sussex County citizens.