Opioid Safety Initiative
Statistically, in North Carolina, overdose deaths, which are classified as accidental poisoning, are in line with those across the country just below the national average. These accidental deaths cross all age and socio-economic groups and many of these deaths could have been prevented in some form or fashion.
Problems from misuse and abuse of prescription pain medications include increasing hospitalization rates from unintentional overdose, the impact on communities of the problem crossing all ages and socio-economic groups, and the lack of treatment facilities and other resources for those who become addicted. There is also a need for those patients with legitimate chronic pain having access to appropriate medications and rehabilitative resources.
Because of these issues prescribing providers face problems of either prescribing not enough medication resulting in continued pain and suffering or prescribing too much medication resulting in misuse, abuse, overdose, or diversion. These problems have caused a major shortage of medical providers willing to provide pain medication and management to any patients. There is a major shortage of available treatment facilities or resources for those who become addicted as well.
CCNC seeks to address these challenges by continuing the effective community-based work that began with the State-wide chronic pain initiative Project Lazarus. Find more information on opioid safety on CCNC's website here.