Town hall meeting to combat drugs

By Eddie Mowen Jr. -

EATON — A Preble County Town Hall, sponsored by the Preble County Substance Abuse Prevention Partnership, will be held Thursday, April 6, from 6-9 p.m. at the Performing Arts Center at Eaton Middle School. The event is free.

According to SAPP, Ohio leads the nation in overdose deaths due to heroin and opioids at a rate of dependence of one person out of every 100.

Three goals of the responding to the heroin epidemic, according to organizers, are:

•Prevent people from starting heroin by reducing prescription opioid painkiller abuse, improving opioid painkiller-prescribing practices and identifying high-risk individuals early.

•Reduce heroin addiction by ensuring access to Medication-Assisted Treatment. Treat people addicted to heroin or prescription opioid painkillers with MAT, which combines the use of medications with counseling and behavioral therapies.

•Reverse heroin overdose by expanding the use of naloxone. Use naloxone, a life-saving drug which can reverse the effects of an opioid overdose when administered.

The Town Hall will include: Preble County Drug Task Forces, county and city stats from the Preble County Sheriff’s Office, local police departments, individuals celebrating recovery, community resources, and local treatment agencies.

If inclement weather occurs, or for more information, call 937-456-7694 regarding the event.

Ohio Governor John Kasich announced a plan targeting the doctor’s office, where many say many opioid addictions begin.

Kasich’s order limits the amount of opiates primary care physicians and dentists can prescribe to no more than seven days for adults and five days for minors and requires doctors to provide a specific diagnosis and procedure code for every painkiller prescription written. Doctors who don’t follow the law will lose their license to practice, according to officials.

According to Ray Clauson with Narcanon, those with loved ones who are using opiates or heroin have a new risk, in that drug dealers across the United States have begun to mix drugs with the extremely powerful and dangerous drug known as Fentanyl.

“The drug Fentanyl can be from 50 to 100 times more powerful then heroin, making the risk of a fatal overdose much higher,” Clauson wrote in a recent editorial. “Drug dealers have been using this drug to increase the potency of their heroin at a lower cost.

“Now more than ever it is essential to get those you know who are addicted into treatment. Having a relationship with a person who has an addiction to opiates is often stressful,” he continued. “Although you just want to help the addicted person, they many times fight against you as if you were the enemy. Addicts can be very difficult to get into treatment and it is important to ask for help when you need it. There are professionals who can help you handle your loved one before it is too late.”

“Fentanyl has made the risks of being a heroin addict even higher than it already was,” Clauson said. “Get yourself educated. If one of your loved ones is struggling with addiction, get them into treatment. Don’t wait until it is too late.”

By Eddie Mowen Jr.

Reach Eddie Mowen Jr. at 937-683-4056 or on Twitter @emowen_RH.

Reach Eddie Mowen Jr. at 937-683-4056 or on Twitter @emowen_RH.