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Understanding the Opioid Crisis and what Kiwanis can do • What do we know about the opioid crisis? ▪ Roughly 21 to 29 percent of patients prescribed opioids for chronic pain misuse them ▪ Between 8 and 12 percent develop an opioid use disorder ▪ An estimated 4 to 6 percent who misuse prescription opioids transition to heroin ▪ About 80 percent of people who use heroin first misused prescription opioids ▪ Opioid overdoses increased 30 percent from July 2016 through September 2017 in 52 areas in 45 states
▪ The Midwestern region saw opioid overdoses increase 70 percent from July 2016 through 2017 ▪ Opioid overdoses in large cities increased by 54 percent in 16 states ▪ In New Jersey, the death rate from overdose is calculated as 16 deaths /100, 00 persons as compared to the national rate of 13. 3 deaths/100, 000. ▪ In 2016, the death toll from drugs in NJ reached 2, 221. Data for overdoses in 2017 have not been released, however, if the early 2018 drug death numbers continued on pace, the total would top 3, 000.
A New Jersey Perspective According to a study by the Partnership for a Drug Free New Jersey nearly half of New Jersey residents who participated in a recent survey report little or no concern about the potential dangers of prescription pain medications to themselves or a family member! According to the Executive Director, “It is alarming that more than half of the respondents either are not aware or the potential tragic effects of prescription opioid misuse or believe they and their families are immune to those dangers”
Prescription Drugs • Fastest growing category today • For youth, primary source is friends and grandparents medicine cabinets • Throw away old medications by mixing them with spoiled food and putting in the trash • Keep medications in a locked box in your closet • Oxycontin, Percodan , Oxycodone • Pharming Parties : parties for the exchange or abuse of over the counter or pharmaceutical medications
Heroin • Heavily abused in NJ • Often begins following recreational use oxycodone and other prescription opiates • Being snorted as introductory drug and marketed as “non-addictive” • Columbian or “China White: - High grade heroin. NJ purity noted to be 10% • Mexican black tar – lower purity
• Heroin users likely to be: ▪ White suburban men and women ▪ In their teens and 20’s ▪ Get hooked on prescription opiates ▪ Then turn to heroin because it’s cheaper and easier to get
Fentanyl laced Heroin • Is an opiate used for chronic pain in advanced cancer care and as an anesthetic • It can kill by slowing or stopping breathing • Exponentially more powerful than morphine. • 30 -50% stronger than heroin • Even the smallest amount can be fatal • Street versions of the drug are often mixed with heroin and can be even more potent. • The chances of overdose occurring are greater than in the less potent opioid medications.
What can Kiwanis Clubs do? • • Join your community’s anti-drug coalition Educate your members Educate the public Partner with your Key Club or CKI club to host an opioid prevention and education session • Sponsor an evidence-based prevention program for at-risk youth • Donate to a youth recovery center • Help children of addicts
• • Help first responders save lives Sponsor a Narcan training class Join a takeback event Let families know that help is available “Kiwanis Magazine, September 2017”
“ 174 people die each day from an overdose…. the time is now!”