opioid epidemic

(File Photo: U.S. Department of Agriculture)
(File Photo: U.S. Department of Agriculture)

Besides support for farmers and agricultural efforts, the recently passed Farm Bill also addresses the opioid epidemic in rural communities.

Funds to increase telemedicine treatment and training options will be available through the bill. 

Charlotte Tuggle / WBAA

As the opioid epidemic rages on across the country, Indiana researchers are among those rethinking pain management.

But non-opioid medication has fallen short for those with chronic pain.

When you’re hurt, your nervous system sends a signal to your brain and you feel pain. Most pain medications mask the pain by blocking the receptors that cause you to feel it.

According to Richard van Rijn – a Purdue University medicinal chemist and molecular pharmacologist – the right type of medication depends on the type of pain. He says for chronic pain, it’s hard to find effective medication.

Federal Funding Will Support Indiana Health Research

May 22, 2018
Anantha Shekhar, MD, PhD, founding director of the Indiana CTSI. (Photo courtesy of Indiana University School of Medicine)
Jill Sheridan

There will be more public health resources in Indiana to speed research and advance treatment and prevention.

There’s a new Indiana University study that details the cost of the opioid epidemic in Indiana. The report estimates the misuse of opioids has resulted in more than $43 billion in losses over the past 15 years. 

The study outlines an annual average of $3 billion in losses from indirect cost associated with loss of gross state product loss and underemployment due to addiction.  

The second round of federal funding to address the opioid epidemic in Indiana has been announced. The state will receive $10.9 million from the 21st Century Cures Act.

Last year, Indiana received the same amount of funding from the law and put it towards efforts including expansion of residential treatment centers, an anti-stigma campaigns and enhancement of the state’s prescription monitoring program. 

These new grants will be administrated through the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

Rush Addresses Opioid Epidemic On Legal Panel

Apr 10, 2018
Chief Justice Loretta Rush on a 2016 panel. (Brandon Smith/IPB News)
Jill Sheridan

Indiana Supreme Court Chief Justice Loretta Rush participated in a panel discussion about the legal issues involved in the opioid epidemic in Washington D.C. this week.  

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Jake Harper/ Side Effects Public Media

New research finds that fentanyl is far more common than heroin in overdose deaths in Indianapolis and that blacks are particularly affected.

In 2017, nearly half of the people who died from an overdose in Marion County, where Indianapolis is located, had fentanyl in their system. Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that is up to 100 times stronger than morphine.

Lindsey Wright / IPB News

It’s been about six months since the Trump administration declared a nation-wide public health emergency due to the opioid crisis, but many are wondering what’s changed.

Trump says federal leaders will roll out a policy plan in the next few weeks, and local advocates hope to see less talk, and more action. ​

‘Keep doing the good work’

Eric Norris / flickr.com/photos/sfxeric/3964596491

West Lafayette is gearing up to sue opioid manufacturers and distributors – joining a long list of U.S. cities going after painkiller producers in the courtroom.

More than a dozen manufacturers are to be named in the lawsuit, including Johnson & Johnson, Allergan and Purdue Pharma. They’re some of the companies responsible for such drugs as Norco and Oxycontin. The city will allege those companies, in its words, “deceptively marketed” opioids.

Opiate distributors will also be named in the lawsuit, alleging those parties failed to report and stop high-quantity orders.

Tex Texin / flickr.com/photos/textexin/3612094774

In March, the Frankfort Police Department will begin to treat every drug overdose as a crime scene in an effort to find and convict drug dealers.

According to new overdose guidelines, officers will first respond to the overdose in a medical sense. And if an opioid was involved, they’ll administer the overdose-reversal drug naloxone.

Then, officers will collect evidence and statements from the scene to help build criminal cases against drug dealers.

Deputy Chief Scott Shoemaker says he’s confident most victims won’t cooperate, so police will dig deeper.

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