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WXXI, in partnership with public broadcasting stations across New York state, will air special programming examining the opioid crisis during the week of Oct. 15.New York’s Opioid Crisis is a first-of-its-kind partnership to draw attention to this public health crisis and raise awareness of services available in local communities for those affected by opioid addiction.Support for opioid crisis programming on WXXI is provided in part by the New York State Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services. A complete list of programs can be found here: WXXI.org/opioid-prog.We want to hear what you have to say about opioid and heroin use in our community. Please click on this link to take a short survey.

Connections: The opioid epidemic and overdose prevention

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Tens of thousands of Americans die from opioid overdoses each year. In March of 2016, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced independent pharmacies in New York State would be able to provide Narcan -- a medication that reverses the effects of opioid overdose -- without a prescription. Despite this accessibility, Monroe County Commissioner of Public Health Dr. Mike Mendoza says few people are taking advantage of the availability of the kits. He says lack of awareness and stigma contribute to the issue. 

Our guests discuss the opioid epidemic and overdose prevention. In studio:

  • Dr. Mike Mendoza, M.D., Monroe County Commissioner of Public Health
  • Jennifer Faringer, director of DePaul's National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence-Rochester Area (NCADD-RA)
  • Dr. Holly Russell, M.D., family physician and primary care Suboxone prescriber