opioid epidemic

Guards at the Southern Ohio Correctional Facility near Lucasville plan to picket outside the prison Wednesday, trying to draw attention to what they call state efforts to downplay the issue of drugs in prisons.

Treatment and prevention programs are an important part of the effort against opioid addiction, the former U.S. surgeon general said in Cleveland yesterday.

Dr. Vivek Murthy spoke at the Global Center for Health Innovation on Thursday with the acting head of the Drug Enforcement Administration and Dr. Toby Cosgrove, the CEO of the Cleveland Clinic.

In an interview before the panel, Murthy said prevention efforts could focus on helping kids learn social and emotional skills.

New Hampshire State Forensic Lab

Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner Dr. Thomas Gilson says the mixing of deadly synthetic heroin with cocaine is spreading the opioid crisis to the African American community.

Karen Kasler / Statehouse News

In his State of the State speech last month, Gov. John Kasich announced he wants the state’s Third Frontier commission to spend $20 million toward high-tech solutions to the deadly opioid crisis. The panel has taken the first step toward doing that.

The new BCI drug testing lab in Springfield, Ohio.
Jess Mador / WYSO

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine, along with officials from Clark County and the city of Springfield, unveiled a new Bureau of Criminal Investigation lab in downtown Springfield on Tuesday.

Ohio U.S. Sentators Rob Portman, left, and Sherrod Brown.
Ideastream

Both of Ohio’s U.S. Senators have introduced a bipartisan bill they say will help combat the opioid abuse problems in the Buckeye State.

Sen. Joe Schiavoni (D-Boardman) introduces plan to pull $200 million from the Ohio Rainy Day Fund to fight opioid addiction.
Andy Chow / Ohio Public Radio

Democratic senators believe Ohio has reached a critical point in the opioid epidemic and needs to turn to extreme measures in order to tackle the problem.

In March, President Trump called opioid abuse in the U.S. "a total epidemic," and issued an executive order creating a commission focused on combating the opioid crisis.

There’s a new drug on the streets in three states, including Ohio. And the state’s top law enforcement official says it is already causing overdoses. 

Healthcare Costs / Flickr

Ohio health care advocates are reacting to Thursday's passage of a GOP health bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. The bill is far from becoming reality. But, if passed into law, the “American Health Care Act” would make a long list of changes to the country’s health-care system.

Mount Carmel West

Charlie Stewart is tall, 25 years old, and broad shouldered. He’s wearing a grey polo-shirt and slacks, and starts each morning with a protein shake.

Every Tuesday you can find him walking the narrow linoleum halls of the emergency department at Mount Carmel West.

The Drug Enforcement Administration has proposed hiring its own prosecutor corps to bring cases related to drug trafficking, money laundering and asset forfeiture — a move that advocacy groups warn could exceed the DEA's legal authority and reinvigorate the 1980s-era war on drugs.

Rep Ryan Smith presents a poster identifying how opioid dollars will be spent..
Jo Ingles / Ohio Public Radio

The Ohio House’s version of the two year budget adds more than $170 million to fight Ohio’s opioid crisis and adds $80 million for the state’s K-12 schools.

File Photo

Ohio’s opioid crisis has been tearing through the state causing one tragedy after another. For months, Democrats have been calling on Gov. John Kasich to release rainy day funds to aid in the fight. One Republican who wants to replace him was asked at a broadcasters' gathering to weigh in on that.

Nearly 1.5 million Americans were treated for addiction to prescription opioids or heroin in 2015, according to federal estimates, and when those people get seriously hurt or need surgery, it's often not clear, even to many doctors, how to safely manage their pain. For some former addicts, what begins as pain relief ends in tragedy.

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