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The PA Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs has established a hotline for individuals and/or their loved ones who are seeking drug and alcohol treatment services. If you need assistance in finding a treatment provider or funding for addiction treatment, please call 1-800-662-HELP (4357) or contact your local county drug and alcohol office.
Pa. state Rep. Edward Gainey joined other members of the PA-HOPE Caucus to talk about designating October 19th as “Lock ‘Em Up” Day in Pennsylvania.
Thank you for allowing me to address a joint session of the legislature.
Working together, we have had great success in moving Pennsylvania forward, but we still have a lot more work to do.
Advisers: Trump Won’t Declare Opioid Crisis a National Emergency
Focus on Women as Opioid-Related Hospital Stays, ER Visits Surge
TODAY | BY A. PAWLOWSKI | 6.20.17
There’s a startling new snapshot of the nation’s opioid epidemic. In just a decade, the rate of people hospitalized because of pain relievers and heroin rose 64 percent, while the rate of opioid-related emergency room visits almost doubled, according to a report released Tuesday.
More Data Needed in Fight Against Opioids Use, Experts Say
PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE | BY TRACIE MAURIELLO | 6.20.17
WASHINGTON — The numbers are staggering, and yet Donald S. Burke wants more of them.
He believes good data is essential in fighting the opioid crisis that is growing exponentially across the country — and nowhere faster than the Appalachian region that includes Western Pennsylvania.
Pennsylvania Could Be Next State To Sue Pharma Companies Over Opioids
Pittsburgh’s NPR News Station | BY MARGARET J. KRAUSS | 6.19.17
Roughly 3,900 Pennsylvanians died of opioid-related overdoses last year.
State Senate Democratic Leader Jay Costa wants Pennsylvania to sue pharmaceutical companies for what he characterizes as deceptive marketing of opioids.
Costa Takes Steps to hold Pharmaceutical Industry Accountable for Opioid Crisis
Overdose Survivors in the ER: Seizing Opportunity within Tragedy
The HOSPITAL & HEALTHSYSTEM ASSOCIATION OF PA | BY MICHAEL J. CONSUELOS, SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, CLINICAL INTEGRATION | 6.06.17
Hospital emergency rooms (ER) across the state are working to realize the potential for opportunity within the tragedy of Pennsylvania’s opioid epidemic. While caring for overdose survivors rescued from death, ERs are working to foster connections that could help those patients recover their lives.
Gainey: HOPE Caucus Discusses Policy Options with Stakeholders
Amid Opioid Epidemic, Paramedics Feel the Weight of Tragedy
PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE | BY SHELLY BRADBURY | 5.20.17
PITTSBURGH (AP) — The call came in at dinnertime: an 11-year-old girl, not breathing.
Pittsburgh paramedics with Medic 8 supposed the girl was choking on her food as they raced to the address in Beechview.
Philadelphia to Mull Safe Injection Sites in Opioid Fight
Behind The Headlines: Pennsylvania’s Opioid Epidemic Up Close
14.1% OF STUDENTS BELIEVED THERE WAS LITTLE-TO-NO RISK IN USING PRESCRIPTION DRUGS NOT PRESCRIBED TO THEM
24.3% OF STUDENTS SAID IT WOULD BE "SORT OF EASY" OR VERY EASY" TO GET PRESCRIPTION DRUGS
AN ESTIMATED 70% - 80% OF PENNSYLVANIA'S CRIMINAL OFFENDERS HAVE SUBSTANCE ABUSE PROBLEMS
ABOUT 80% OF INDIVIDUALS WHO HAVE PROGRESSED TO HEROIN ORIGINALLY USED PRESCRIPTION PAIN MEDICATIONS
THE SCOPE OF THE CRISIS
In 2014, according to the federal Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), approximately 2,500 Pennsylvanians died from overdose of opioid drugs. The victims came from every corner of the state. According to the Pennsylvania Health Care Cost Containment Council (PHC4), opioid overuse and abuse cost the Commonwealth more than $12.2 million in hospitalization costs annually as of 2012.
There is broad consensus the opioid issue affects all groups of Pennsylvanians – not differentiating by race, region, religion, income or any other factor. Beyond the public health toll, opioids are straining prisons (70 to 80 percent of all jail sentences) and are costly (nationwide, more than $50 billion annually in treatment and lost productivity).
WHAT ARE OPIOIDS?
Opioids are a class of drugs derived from or pharmacologically similar to opiates. While these analgesics are the most effective pharmaceuticals for killing pain, they carry with them a significant risk of addiction. Some data suggest that 60 percent of prescription opioid deaths occur in patients with no history of substance abuse and who are only prescribed an opioid by one health care practitioner.
WHAT IS HEROIN?
Heroin is an opioid pain killer. It is also used less commonly as a cough suppressant and as an antidiarrhoeal. Heroin is used as a recreational drug for its euphoric effects. Frequent and regular administration is associated with tolerance and physical dependence. In some countries it is also given to long-term users as a form of opioid replacement therapy alongside counseling.