Mental Health and Recovery Services Board Celebrates Two Year Anniversary of the Opioid Action Commission – There is Hope!

 On December 7 the Opioid Action Commission met at The Mental Health and Recovery Services Board to celebrate its successes. The most exciting news discussed was the fact that overdose deaths for 2018 are dramatically lower than 2017. Hospitals and Fire Departments state that the number of overdoses presenting to the Emergency Rooms and in the community have fallen significantly. In 2017 there were 39 overdose deaths in Allen County and in 2018 only one death has been reported as of October. (Auglaize and Hardin Counties are reporting no overdose deaths for 2018). There continues to be a comprehensive effort on the part of many community providers that impacted this result:

  • Local Detox Units at Coleman and St. Rita’s have made access to treatment easier

    • 2017 – 140 people received detox services locally

    • 2018 – 43 people in the first quarter

  • Prescriber Education and Monitoring – Both St. Rita’s and Lima Memorial are working hard to ensure that doctors in our region have the most up to date information about best practice prescribing practice for opioid based pain medication. This resulted in far fewer opioid pain medications being prescribed locally contributing significantly to the reduction of “pain pills” in the community.

  • Outreach Efforts have connected people and families in need with treatment

    • Quick Response Teams respond to emergency departments within 30 to 60 minutes of an overdose

    • LPD, UMADAOP and Coleman are cooperating in connecting people with treatment

    • PVFF initiated overdose survivor support groups

  • Naloxone – Allen County Public Health has made Project Dawn kits available to first responders and the community that reverse the effects of an overdose and give the other teams an opportunity to outreach and connect individuals and families into treatment.

  • Let’s Talk is a prevention effort focused on convincing parents of the importance of talking to their children about drugs, suicide, and their strengths. Over 5000 parents have viewed the program. 

In November of 2016, when the Opioid Commission was formed, there was only a 10% chance that an individual addicted to heroin or an opioid pain medication would recover. In other words, 90% of these people would die of their addiction. In December of 2018, 50% to 60% of people addicted to heroin or an opioid pain medication are in recovery in Allen, Auglaize and Hardin Counties - an astounding reversal of a trend toward hopelessness. The community coming together has created new hope for those caught in the throes of this terrible addiction.

Opioid Action Commission Meeting

Micah Sobota - Coleman

Susan Hawk - St. Rita's

If you are in crisis call 1-800-567-HOPE (4673) or text 741 741.

529 S. Elizabeth St.

Lima, OH 45804