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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: Discussing the state of the opioid epidemic at the local and national levels

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According to new data, the number of deaths from opioid overdoses in Monroe County decreased for the first time since 2015. Nearly 200 people died from overdoses in 2018. Monroe County Public Health Commissioner Michael Mendoza says the use of overdose reversal drugs like naloxone is a primary reason for the decline, but he also says long-term solutions are needed to combat the epidemic.

Several Democratic presidential candidates have released their plans for addressing the crisis. This hour, we explore the state of the opioid epidemic both at the local and national levels, and our guests discuss if they think the proposed policies could be effective. In studio:

  • Dr. Michael Mendoza, M.D., Monroe County Public Health Commissioner
  • Dr. Michael Apostolakos, M.D., chief medical officer for the University of Rochester Medical Center
  • Laura Garrison, vice president for development WXXI and The Little Theatre, who has experienced long-term chronic pain
Evan Dawson is the host of "Connections with Evan Dawson." He joined WXXI in January 2014 after working at 13WHAM-TV, where he served as morning news anchor. He was hired as a reporter for 13WHAM-TV in 2003 before being promoted to anchor in 2007.
Megan Mack is the executive producer of "Connections with Evan Dawson" and live/televised engagement programming.
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