Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Overdose Prevention and Education

The Council of Southeast Pennsylvania, Inc. is spearheading an initiative focused on overdose prevention and education. Nationwide the number of deaths due to prescription and non-prescription drugs out numbers the deaths related to motor vehicle accidents. This number has continually increased over the years and Bucks County is not immune to the nationwide trend.

According to 2010 information from the Bucks County Coroner’s Office, of all deaths that involved toxicology, 65.8% were directly related to drugs. 37.2% of those deaths were of people under the age of 30. This number reported by the coroner’s office has almost doubled in the past four years. Oxycodone, Xanax, Heroin, Codeine and Morphine were among the highest reported drugs found at the time of death.

There have been initiatives of varying levels in other states from education and awareness, to passing laws giving immunity to those responding to an overdose by calling 911 and establishing programs that distribute a lifesaving antidote to an opioid overdose. Bucks County needs to take action.

This site will include information on the progress of the newly formed Overdose Prevention and Education Advisory Board’s presentations, steps taking place in other communities, legislative actions that are initiated, education and information on drugs and overdose, and resources and references.

If you would like to become involved in this initiative please click on the Advisory Board link and check the calendar or contact Valerie Fahie, Overdose Prevention Coordinator at 215-230-8218 x 3158 orvfahie@councilsepa.org.

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