Opioid Use and Overdose Awareness and Prevention

It’s no secret that in recent years communities across the nation have been faced with rising number of deaths associated with opioid use disorder. In 2016, 917 residents of Connecticut died of accidental opioid overdoses; the death rate for 2017 is predicted to be even higher.

Opioids are a class of drugs that include the illegal drug heroin, synthetic opioids such as fentanyl, and pain relievers available legally by prescription, such as oxycodone, hydrocodone, codeine, morphine, and many others. A person with opioid use disorder may be using illegal OR legal opioids – both types interact with a person’s opioid receptors in the same way and can result in significant impairment, such as health problems, disability, and failure to meet major responsibilities at work, school, or home.

In 2016, based on the LLHD/L+M Community Health Assessment, Opioid Use Disorder was included as one of five priority areas by the Health Improvement Collaborative of SECT. The Opioid Action Team is a multi-sector group of community organizations, treatment providers, government agencies, and individuals that meets regularly to coordinate efforts and interventions in response to the opioid epidemic. The Action Team’s mission is to create and enhance conditions in our community that lead to sustained support for a continuum of care through a person’s recovery journey. You can read more about the Opioid Action Team’s purpose, values and membership here and join us on the 3rd Wednesday of each month. Please contact jmuggeo@llhd.org or 860.448.4882, ext. 300.

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