WXXI AM News

Opioid Crisis

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.

 

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

Heroin has exploded as a problem in the United States, and it doesn't discriminate: rural communities, city neighborhoods. WROC-TV's Adam Chodak recently reported on several aspects of the problem in Rochester, along with the debate over solutions. Drop-off treatment centers? Needle exchange? Read Part 1 here, and Part 2 here.

We discuss the various approaches with our guests:

  • Adam Chodak, WROC-TV anchor
  • Matt Woodring, advocate and former addict
  • Miguel Melendez, special projects director for Ibero-American Development Corporation

Mothers of young men and women addicted to heroin are frustrated with the way insurance companies view the plights of their children. A growing group of mothers is arguing for more consistent coverage from insurance companies, as their children try to overcome their addictions and save their own lives.

The moms have put together a community forum to help family members deal with the industry. On Connections, they share their struggles while we discuss options for families in need.

Our guests include parents Donna Rose, Kathy Miller, Becky Baker, and Avi Israel

Presidential contender Chris Christie recently spoke at length about drug addiction during a town hall meeting in New Hampshire. His comments about the need for fairness went viral. Now the Obama administration's drug czar, Michael Botticelli, is essentially saying the same thing.

What does this mean for the future of treatment? What works, and what doesn't? Our panel explores it. Our guests:

yourblogondrugs.com

School starts for most districts this week and next, and it’s the first time when New York Schools can supply their nurses with a drug to reverse the effects of a drug overdose. Many districts are still weighing the pros and cons of the decision, but nurses in Dansville had a Naloxone training session Wednesday. 

Naloxone is a drug that  stops an opioid  overdose. State legislators created new rules and funding that allows districts to stock the medication in the case of an overdose on school grounds.

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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says there’s the equivalent of one bottle of prescription painkillers for every adult American. Meanwhile, 46 people a day die from an overdose of those same painkillers. That’s why New York State is trying to curb the problem of over prescribing.

Michelle Faust / WXXI

Heroin and opioid abuse and overdose deaths are on the rise; it is the leading cause of death in New York State. Monroe County had nearly 100 heroin overdoses last year. In this edition of Need To Know, we highlight an antidote that could reverse an overdose, and one mom - who lost her son to an overdose - is pushing for its use.

Connections: The Science and Dangers of Heroin

Jul 6, 2015

Continuing the discussion around heroin as part of our Heroin at Home series, we learn about the science and the dangers of heroin, and what we can do about it. We'll have sound clips from Jim Wesley, supervisor of the chemistry section of the Monroe County Public Safety Laboratory and more info from our panel:

  • Olinda Ford, associate director of the harm reduction initiative at Trillium Health
  • Dr. Timothy Wiegand, professor of emergency medicine, University of Rochester Medical Center
  • Elizabeth Burek, Rochester Drug Treatment Court

As part of our month-long series Heroin at Home, Michelle Faust joins Evan Dawson to talk about the beginnings of the recent heroin epidemic that is plaguing Rochester. Our guests:

Sam Quinones, author of Dreamland: The True Tale of America's Opiate Epidemic

Ben Allen, reporter at WITF

WATCH: Heroin and Opioid Abuse in ROC

Jul 6, 2015
yourblogondrugs.com

On this edition of Need To Know: Heroin and Opioid abuse is on the rise here in Monroe County and across the country. What efforts are in place to combat this?

Plus, OSHA is trying to curtail a disease that's plagued stone workers since the ancient greeks. We look into how OSHA is tackling silicosis.

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