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December 24, 2014

 

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SAMHSA
SAMHSA Prescription Drug Abuse Weekly Update
WEEKLY
UPDATE
Issue 103  |  December 24, 2014
The Prevention of Prescription Drug Abuse in the Workplace (PAW) TA Center addresses prescription drug abuse—a growing public health problem with increasing burdens on workers, workplaces, and our economy. To subscribe colleagues, family members, or friends to this listserv sponsored by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), please click here or send their e-mail addresses to paw@dsgonline.com.
Table of Content Featured Article Journal Articles and Reports National News International News Northeast/Mid-Atlantic News Midwest News South News West News Other Resources Funding Opportunities Take-Back Events and Drop Boxes Upcoming Conferences and Workshops

Featured

S.L. Keast, N. Nesser, and K. Farmer. 2015. "Strategies Aimed at Controlling Misuse and Abuse of Opioid Prescription Medications in a State Medicaid Program: A Policymaker's Perspective." The American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse 41(1):1–6, doi:10.3109/00952990.2014.988339.

This paper describes Oklahoma Medicaid's management of prescription opioid misuse at the pharmacy benefit level. Strategies included pharmacy lock-in, quantity limits per prescription, limiting to thirteen 30-day prescriptions per year, prior authorization, restriction to abuse-deterrent formulations, step therapy that starts patients with lower-risk immediate-release products before moving to long-acting products, restriction of liquid hydrocodone (which is expensive) to children and people with disabilities who cannot take pills, prospective drug utilization review (akin to a prescription monitoring program check in the Medicaid prescription file), and restricted pharmacy benefit reimbursement to prescriptions written by contracted Medicaid providers. Full or partial evaluations of pharmacy lock-in and step therapy found these strategies effective. Although utilization review and limiting prescriptions reduced claims payments, they may have merely shifted some use to self-pay. Evaluative data are not yet available on the other strategies.

Read more:
http://informahealthcare.com/doi/abs/10.3109/00952990.2014.988339

Journal Articles and Reports

A.L. Bretteville–Jensen, M. Lillehagen, L. Gjersing, and J. Burdzovic Andreas. 2014. "Illicit Use of Opioid Substitution Drugs: Prevalence, User Characteristics, and the Association with Non-Fatal Overdoses." Drug and Alcohol Dependence, doi:10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2014.12.002.

In Oslo, Norway, 1,355 street-recruited injecting drug users were surveyed semiannually from 2006 through 2013. Averaged across all interviews, 27 percent of responses indicated illicit opioid substitution drug use in the past 4 weeks, with 16.8 percent using methadone, 12.5 percent using buprenorphine, and 2.9 percent using both drugs. Nonfatal overdose rates were almost 10 percent in the past 4 weeks and one third in the past year. Illicit opioid substitution drugs users were at least as likely to use additional drugs as injecting drug users. Among illicit opioid substitution drugs users, non-lethal overdose risk was elevated for infrequent buprenorphine use (once or less per week). Other non-fatal overdose risk factors included age, education, homelessness, and use of benzodiazepines, stimulants, or heroin.

Read more:
http://www.drugandalcoholdependence.com/article/S0376-8716(14)01981-4/abstract

M. Costello and S. Thompson. 2014. "Preventing Opioid Misuse and Potential Abuse: The Nurse's Role in Patient Education." Pain Management Nursing, doi:10.1016/j.pmn.2014.09.008.

A 48-question survey e-mailed to registered nurses at two large Boston medical centers drew 133 full responses (response rate not reported). The survey showed knowledge gaps among nurses caring for patients who received opioid analgesics, particularly related to patient assessment, pharmacologic management, adjuvant medication use, addiction risks, respiratory depression risks, drug storage, and drug disposal. Only 25 percent of the nurses answered at least half of the survey questions correctly. Accuracy did not vary with nurse demographics, including years of experience working as a nurse and educational level. Nurses who received education on opioids as a separate class of medication scored better.

Read more:
http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1524904214001556

E.K. Choo, C. Douriez, and T. Green. 2014. "Gender and Prescription Opioid Misuse in the Emergency Department." Academic Emergency Medicine 21(12):1493–498, doi:10.1111/acem.12547.

According to Drug Abuse Warning Network data, 426,010 emergency department visits involved prescription opioid use in 2011. Logistic regression showed that ingestion of opioids along with another drug increased hospital admission odds. Prevalence, odds elevation from other drug use, and type of opioids ingested were similar between women and men. However, women were more likely to present with antidepressant co-use, and men with alcohol co-use.

Read more:
http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/acem.12547/abstract

S. Darakjy, J.E. Brady, C.J. DiMaggio, and G. Li. 2014. "Applying Farr's Law to Project the Drug Overdose Mortality Epidemic in the United States." Injury Epidemiology 1:31, doi:10.1186/s40621-014-0031-2.

In the United States, from 1980 to 2011, annual drug overdose mortality increased from 2.7 to 13.2 deaths per 100,000 population. Farr's Law of Epidemics suggests if overdose were an infectious disease, projected overdose mortality would peak in 2016–17 at 16.1 deaths per 100,000 population, and then decline progressively to 1.9 deaths per 100,000 population in 2035.

Read more:
http://www.injepijournal.com/content/1/1/31

R.C. Dart, A.C. Bronstein, D.A. Spyker, L.R. Cantilena, S.A. Seifert, S.E. Heard, and E.P. Krenzelok. 2014. "Poisoning in the United States: 2012 Emergency Medicine Report of the National Poison Data System." Annals of Emergency Medicine, doi:10.1016/j.annemergmed.2014.11.001.

The number of human exposures managed by poison centers was stable, at 2.3 to 2.4 million, during the 10-year period ending in 2012. In contrast, the number of human exposures involving prescription opioid analgesics doubled, from 22,641 in 2003 to 44,381 in 2012. Methadone was the leading opioid as a cause of death in the National Poison Data System, with 178 cases in 2012. Many deaths involved the tablet formulation used for pain control—not the liquid or diskette formulations used for opioid abuse treatment. Prescription opioid single substance exposures involving children age 5 years or younger more than doubled, from 2,591 in 2003 to 5,541 in 2012. Associated child deaths rose from 1 to 7, with methadone the most frequent culprit.

Read more:
http://www.annemergmed.com/article/S0196-0644(14)01477-2/abstract

Teen Prescription Opioid Abuse, Cigarette, and Alcohol Use Trends Down
National Institutes of Health
December 16, 2014

In the Monitoring the Future survey, 6.1 percent of high school seniors reported past-year use of narcotics other than heroin in 2014, compared with 7.1 percent in 2013 and 9.5 percent at the 2004 peak. Past-year Vicodin use showed a significant 5-year drop from 9.7 percent to 4.8 percent. Adderall use remained relatively steady at 6.8 percent.

Read more:
http://www.monitoringthefuture.org
http://www.nih.gov/news/health/dec2014/nida-16.htm

R. Netemeyer, S. Burton, B. Delaney, and G. Hijjawi. 2014. "The Legal High: Factors Affecting Young Consumers' Risk Perceptions and Abuse of Prescription Drugs." Journal of Public Policy and Marketing, doi:10.1509/jppm.14.073.

A nationally representative Partnership for Drug-Free Kids survey drew responses from more than one thousand 13–18-year-olds in the United States. Regression analysis found prescription drug abuse risk perceptions and prescription drug abuse itself correlated with adolescent anxiety, the need to be popular, being a "good teen," and use of other restricted substances. The relationships were non-linear and varied with demographic characteristics. Perceptions of the risk of prescription drug abuse partially mediated these effects.

Read more:
http://journals.ama.org/doi/abs/10.1509/jppm.14.073

M. Olfson, M. King, and M. Schoenbaum. 2014. "Benzodiazepine Use in the United States." JAMA Psychiatry, doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2014.1763.

In 2008, 5.2 percent of U.S. adults aged 18 to 80 filled a benzodiazepine prescription at a retail pharmacy, according to the LifeLink Longitudinal Prescription database (IMS Health Inc.). The percentage was 2.6 at ages 18–35, 5.4 percent at ages 36–50, 7.4 percent at ages 51–64, and 8.7 percent at ages 65–80. Women were almost twice as likely as men to fill a benzodiazepine prescription. The proportion of long-term benzodiazepine use increased from 14.7 percent at ages 18–35 to 31.4 percent at ages 65–80. The proportion who received a benzodiazepine prescription from a psychiatrist decreased from 15 percent at ages 18–35 to 5.7 percent at ages 65–80. In all age groups, one fourth of individuals filling benzodiazepine prescriptions received long-acting formulations.

Read more:
http://archpsyc.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=2019955

National Report Shows Increase in Patients Potentially Misusing Non-Prescribed Medications, Abusing Illicits
PR Newswire
December 17, 2014

Through urine drug tests on 400,000 patients, Ameritox medication monitoring showed more patients in chronic opioid therapy tested positive for a drug not prescribed by their doctor in 2014 (January to August) than in 2012 (33.9 percent versus 32.3 percent) or for an illicit drug (11.6 percent versus 11.1 percent). The most commonly detected illicit drugs were marijuana (78 percent), cocaine (16.7 percent), and heroin (4.6 percent). The percentage of patients testing negative for their prescribed opioids fell from 35.9 percent to 32.2 percent.

Read more:
http://bit.ly/1z4Coh8
http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/national-report-shows-increase-in-patients-potentially-misusing-non-prescribed-medications-abusing-illicits-300010834.html

V. Thumula. 2014. "The Impact of Physician Dispensing on Opioid Use." WC-14-56. Cambridge, Mass.: Workers' Compensation Research Institute.

In July 2011, the Florida workers' compensation program banned physician dispensing of Schedule II and III opioids for newly injured workers. Analysis of more than 46,000 claims showed the percentage of workers who received strong opioids dispensed by physicians within 6 months after injury dropped from 3.9 percent to 0.5 percent. The percentage of patients receiving weaker physician-dispensed pain medications rose from 24.1 percent to 25.8 percent, with the percentage receiving weaker (not banned) opioids increasing from 9.1 percent to 10.1 percent. Only 2 percent of those with weaker physician-dispensed pain medications received strong opioids at a pharmacy in the 6 months that followed.

Read more:
http://www.wcrinet.org/result/PD_opioid_result.html
http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/12/prweb12398218.htm

N. Zamania, H. Hassanian–Moghaddam, A. Hossein Bayat, A. Haghparast, S. Shadnia, M. Rahimi, and B.H. Demaneh. 2014. "Reversal of Opioid Overdose Syndrome in Morphine-Dependent Rats Using Buprenorphine." Toxicology Letters, doi:10.1016/j.toxlet.2014.12.007.

Pure buprenorphine administration recovered opioid overdose in morphine-dependent rats and bypassed withdrawal syndrome due to naloxone administration. In a prospective case-control study, 30 rats were put on opioid-dependency protocol, with 10 mg/kg of intraperitoneal morphine twice daily for 10 days. After confirmation of dependency, the rats were overdosed by giving 16 mg/kg of intraperitoneal methadone. They were divided into four groups receiving naloxone (n=7; 2 mg/kg) or buprenorphine (n=8, 8, and 7, with doses of 3 mg/kg, 6 mg/kg, and 10 mg/kg, respectively). Rats in the first group showed signs and symptoms of opioid withdrawal severely and with a higher frequency. All buprenorphine doses recovered the intoxicated rats without inducing signs or symptoms of withdrawal. The 3 mg/kg dose, however, reversed toxicity slower, and one rat in this group later died after signs of toxicity returned.

Read more:
http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0378427414015148

National News

Prolific Prescribers of Controlled Substances Face Medicare Scrutiny
National Public Radio
December 15, 2014

ProPublica reported that some doctors write large volumes of prescriptions for controlled substances to Medicare patients. The most prolific prescribers have troublesome records. Twelve of Medicare's top 20 prescribers of Schedule II drugs in 2012 have faced disciplinary actions from their state medical boards or criminal charges related to their medical practices. Documents were seized from another prescriber's office by federal agents. In 2012, 269 providers wrote at least 3,000 prescriptions for Schedule II drugs. Florida led the country with 52 providers, followed by Tennessee with 25. About one in five doctors who wrote at least 3,000 prescriptions faced some kind of sanction or investigation. Within the past year, Medicare and some state medical boards have started using prescribing data to identify potentially problematic doctors. Beginning in mid-2015, Medicare will have the authority to kick doctors out of the program if they prescribe in abusive ways. In 2012, Medicare covered nearly 27 million prescriptions for narcotic pain relievers and stimulants with the highest potential for abuse and dependence. This is a 9 percent increase over 2011, compared with a 5 percent increase in Medicare prescriptions overall. (Includes audio: 3:51 minutes)

Read more:
http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2014/12/15/370377838/prolific-prescribers-of-controlled-substances-face-medicare-scrutiny

NFL Wins Dismissal of Ex-Players' Pain Drug Misuse Lawsuit
Karen Gullo, Bloomberg
December 17, 2014

In a lawsuit filed in May, retired National Football League (NFL) players alleged there was a "culture of drug misuse" in the NFL in which the league administered cocktails of medications, local anesthetics, and anti-inflammatories so athletes could continue to play while injured. A judge dismissed the lawsuit, ruling collective bargaining rules block such complaints.

Read more:
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-12-17/nfl-wins-dismissal-of-ex-players-pain-drug-misuse-lawsuit-1-.html

Harkin, Alexander, HELP Committee Members Urge Continued Prescription Drug Abuse Work
United States Senate
December 17, 2014

The U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) sent letters to national, state, and local leaders calling for continued partnership in fighting prescription drug abuse. The letter highlighted priorities to address prescription drug abuse and asked recipients to continue informing the committee of their efforts to stop this epidemic.

Read more:
http://www.help.senate.gov/newsroom/press/release/?id=415132f1-1110-4e3a-9988-03f4d3d964ae

International News

Heath Ledger–Style Prescription Drug Overdose Deaths Could Be Stopped by New Software Alerting Doctors to Prescription Drug Abusers
News.com.au
December 14, 2014

More than 700 Australian medical practices have begun using Dr. Shop software to check whether patients have been prescribed any of 138 dangerous drugs by other doctors on the same day or in the past 90 days. Dr. Shop only works in conjunction with Medicsecure's electronic prescription software, which is used by half the nation's medical practices. The federal government made licensing for a national electronic prescription monitoring program available to states in 2012, but they have not yet adopted it. That system collects information on opioids, but not benzodiazepines, which are the most commonly abused medications.

Read more:
http://www.news.com.au/lifestyle/health/heath-ledger-style-prescription-drug-overdose-deaths-could-be-stopped-by-new-software-alerting-doctors-to-prescription-drug-abusers/story-fneuzlbd-1227155036953

Legal Drugs Cause 75% of Poisoning Deaths
Cormac O'Keeffe, Irish Examiner
December 16, 2014

In Ireland, legal drugs, including prescription medications and alcohol, accounted for three of four 2012 deaths resulting from drug effects. Tranquillizers and alcohol caused 262 of 350 poisoning deaths. More than half of all drug deaths involved polydrug use, which often included a combination of benzodiazepines, methadone, and alcohol.

Read more:
http://www.irishexaminer.com/ireland/legal-drugs-cause-75-of-poisoning-deaths-302685.html
http://www.hrb.ie/publications/hrb-publication/publications//665

Call for Pharmacy Teams to Support Drug Driving Campaign
Fleet News
December 12, 2014

The United Kingdom Department of Transport called on pharmacies to help customers understand changes to drugged driving legislation. Pharmacies are being asked to brief their teams, post campaign materials online and via social media, and display campaign materials in stores and on prescription bags. The new law will establish driver dosage limits for 16 drugs.

Read more:
http://www.fleetnews.co.uk/news/2014/12/12/call-for-pharmacy-teams-to-support-drug-driving-campaign/54313

Northeast/Mid-Atlantic News

No More Paper Prescriptions: Docs Fight Fraud by Going Electronic
Dale Eisinger, The Daily Beast
December 18, 2014

Starting March 27, 2015, New York will become the first to require paperless electronic prescriptions for those filled in state. Veterinarians may continue using prescription pads. A 2011 New York Department of Health memo study found at least 1.4 million prescription pads had been stolen from area hospitals in the previous 3 years.

Read more:
http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2014/12/18/no-more-paper-prescriptions-docs-fight-fraud-by-going-electronic.html

N.J. Heroin Crisis: Senate, Assembly Pass Bills That Would Expand Narcan Immunity, Require Sober Living at Colleges
Stephen Stirling, New Jersey Advance
December 19, 2014

The New Jersey Legislature passed several bills targeting their heroin and prescription opioid problem. The bills increase mental health and addiction services for prison inmates, create a report card ranking substance abuse treatment centers for the public, and extend immunity to emergency responders and others who dispense Narcan. Additional Senate bills headed for the Assembly would overhaul the state's prevention education curriculum, require some colleges to offer substance abuse recovery housing options, and require doctors to warn patients of prescription drugs' addictive nature. The Assembly also passed a bill requiring prescribers and pharmacies to notify patients of available drug take-back programs and suggest ways to safely dispose of drugs.

Read more:
http://www.nj.com/politics/index.ssf/2014/12/nj_heroin_crisis_
senate_passes_bills_that_would_expand_narcan_use_require_sober_
living_at_colleges.html


Dentists, Others Oppose R.I. Plan on Opioids for Family Members + Poll
Lynn Arditi, Providence Journal
December 15, 2014

Professional healthcare provider associations testified at a Rhode Island Department of Health public hearing on proposed regulations to prevent providers from writing opioid prescriptions for themselves or family members. A lobbyist for the Rhode Island Dental Association said the regulations go too far, claiming their approval would force more than 500 dentists to send away family members from their practice within 20 days. The proposed regulations would require patients prescribed opioids to sign treatment agreements with their prescribers about how they will use the medication.

Read more:
http://www.providencejournal.com/breaking-news/content/20141215-dentists-others-oppose-r.i.-health-dept.-plan-to-curb-prescribing-opioids-to-family-members.ece

Midwest News

Local VA Tightening Opioid Procedures
Chillicothe Gazette
December 16, 2014

The Chillicothe, Ohio, Veterans Affairs Medical Center has begun changing its procedures after the Office of the Inspector General received a complaint regarding two doctors' opioid prescribing. Inspectors confirmed the physicians prescribed opioids for patients with whom they had no direct interaction, but decided this was not a violation of law or Veterans Affairs policy. The report also found doctors did not consistently document their use of the Ohio Automated Rx Reporting System or the effectiveness of medication before renewing prescriptions for patients with an increased risk of adverse effects or diversion.

Read more:
http://www.chillicothegazette.com/story/news/local/2014/12/16/local-va-tightening-opioid-procedures/20506613

Opiates Match Alcohol in Ohio Treatment Centers
Jona Ison, Cincinnati.com
December 15, 2014

Statewide data show opiate addiction in Ohio is now on par with alcoholism. Of more than 87,000 clients treated for addiction, 33 percent received alcohol addiction services, and 32 percent received opiate addiction services. The latter figure is an increase from 28 percent in 2012—more than twice as much as in 2008.

Read more:
http://www.cincinnati.com/story/news/2014/12/14/opiates-match-alcohol-ohio-treatment-centers/20415951

Prescription Drug Abuse on Rise in Ohio
WTOV
December 15, 2014

Frank Vostatek, owner and nurse practitioner at Mingo Pharmacy, and Don Ogden, director of behavioral medicine at Trinity Health Care, described Ohio's extreme prescription drug abuse problem and the programs available to treat addiction. (Includes video: 2:10 minutes)

Read more:
http://www.wtov9.com/shared/news/features/top-stories/stories/wtov_
prescription-drug-abuse-rise-ohio-6812.shtml


Barberton Funeral Directors Recruited to Help Keep Unused Prescription Meds Out of Wrong Hands
Paula Schleis, Akron Beacon Journal
December 14, 2014

The Barberton Police Department asked three Ohio funeral homes to collect unused prescription drugs from family members who make funeral arrangements. Silva–Hostetler Funeral Home estimated 30 to 40 percent of families have participated in its disposal service since first offering the option. A letter from the police chief to families explains how collecting prescription medications can prevent them from being improperly used by family members, swallowed by a toddler, eaten by the dog, or flushed into the water supply.

Read more:
http://www.ohio.com/news/local/barberton-funeral-directors-recruited-to-help-keep-unused-prescription-meds-out-of-wrong-hands-1.549782

Self-Help: Addicts Buying Suboxone on Street
Jona Ison, Gannett Ohio
December 13, 2014

Scioto County's sheriff said the black market for Suboxone has exploded. The Ohio Substance Abuse Monitoring Network's 2014 report revealed a high availability of the drug across the state. The report also showed a typical person buying Suboxone on the street is self-medicating to wean off heroin or prescription opioids or avoiding withdrawal between highs. The House passed Bill 378, which aims to reduce diversion of drugs containing buprenorphine and requires doctors prescribing it to provide counseling. The bill is awaiting Senate consideration.

Read more:
http://www.mansfieldnewsjournal.com/story/news/crime/high-in-ohio/
2014/12/13/self-help-addicts-buying-suboxone-street/20350267


Use of Prescription Opiates on Rise in Minnesota
Post-Bulletin
December 12, 2014

Prescription pain relievers are being prescribed in Minnesota more than ever before, with legal distribution of all opioids increasing by 72 percent statewide from 2005 to 2011. The largest increases were in Ramsey County and the northwestern part of the state. Last year, Duluth had the highest rate of opiate pain reliever distribution in Ohio at more than 5,000 grams per 10,000 people. The southwestern corner of the state had the lowest rate at 1,600 grams per 10,000 people. Increased pain reliever use brings a surge in addiction, crime, arrests, and overdose deaths. Opiate abuse is also a problem on some of Minnesota's American Indian reservations. The Leech Lake Band reported that about 80 percent of substance abuse problems on its reservation stemmed from opiate addiction.

Read more:
http://www.postbulletin.com/archives/use-of-prescription-opiates-on-rise-in-minnesota/article_a8228b5e-861d-5459-9034-7555fa8abda8.html

South News

Centra Takes Aim at Narcotics Abuse with Policy Limiting Access to Prescription Opioids
Amy Trent, The News and Advance
December 13, 2014

Responding to a cascade of overdose deaths, Virginia's Centra Health System is moving to OxyContin-free emergency departments (EDs). EDs are appointing clinical nurse navigators who work with ED physicians and patients to develop quick, effective pain management that recognizes addiction potential and patient needs. All encounters are recorded in Centra's electronic health record (EHR) system, and staff are checking both the EHR and state's prescription monitoring program database before prescribing. Analyses underlying the program showed that in 2012, 485 people visited the ED at Lynchburg General Hospital nearly 10,000 times with pain complaints, almost always leaving with OxyContin prescriptions. Centra is evaluating whether physicians effectively manage patients' pain, and if ED misuse decreases.

Read more:
http://www.newsadvance.com/news/local/centra-takes-aim-at-narcotics-abuse-with-policy-limiting-access/article_a071222e-833e-11e4-8a50-c7a475e4fb1c.html

Rx Drug Overdoses Linked to Doctors; Prescriber Names to Be Sent to Prosecutors
Eric Eyre, Charleston Gazette
December 14, 2014

A West Virginia Board of Pharmacy committee charged with reviewing overdose deaths is sending 27 doctors' names to law enforcement agencies and medical licensing boards. In 6 months, one doctor in the state prescribed medications to six people who died from drug overdoses. Nine other doctors wrote prescriptions for two or more overdose victims during the same half year. About 20 pharmacies will also face scrutiny for filling the prescriptions. In June, the panel sent more than 2,500 letters to medical professionals warning that their patients could be doctor shopping for prescription drugs. In the letters, the panel urged doctors to check a multistate prescription monitoring program database. It also gave West Virginia State Police the names of 90 people suspected of soliciting an excessive number of pain pill prescriptions from multiple doctors.

Read more:
http://www.wvgazette.com/article/20141214/GZ01/141219687/1419

New Dog Trained to Find Prescription Pills
Jule Hubbard, Wilkes Journal-Patriot
December 17, 2014

The Wilkes County Sheriff's Office in North Carolina used money forfeited by suspects in drug cases to purchase a Belgian Shepherd trained to detect prescription drugs and other opiate substances. The dog, Jett, will also be used for school demonstrations. Jett is assigned to and living with a school resource officer who works in the West Wilkes School District.

Read more:
http://www.journalpatriot.com/news/article_26fe826a-8622-11e4-9ac2-9742fd091732.html

Health Outcomes and Policy Professors Collaborate on Creation of Annual Report for the Florida Prescription Drug Monitoring Program
University of Florida
December 15, 2014

The Florida Prescription Drug Monitoring Program 2013–14 Annual Report outlines developments and trends in the program's efforts to reduce prescription drug abuse and misuse. It shows an 8.3 percent decrease in deaths caused by one or more controlled substance prescriptions, and a 53 percent reduction in the number of patients engaged in doctor shopping. More than 90 percent of Florida pharmacies uploaded information to the system in a timely fashion, and requests for information from the database increased by 64 percent. Of concern, the number of prescriptions for Zohydro Extended-Release increased 77 percent since March 2014.

Read more:
http://health-outcomes-policy.ufl.edu/2014/12/15/health-outcomes-and-policy-professors-collaborate-on-creation-of-annual-report-for-the-florida-prescription-drug-monitoring-program

Heroin Deaths on the Rise in Orange County, Sheriff Says
Gail Paschall–Brown, WESH
December 15, 2014

Orange County, Fla., has seen a significant increase in heroin overdoses. According to the sheriff, 57 overdoses led to 26 deaths in 2013. So far in 2014, there have been 90 overdoses and 36 deaths. The county's medical examiner said of the 166 accidental drug deaths in 2013, 91 resulted from illegal drugs, and 75 resulted from prescription medications. (Includes video: 2:08 minutes)

Read more:
http://www.wesh.com/news/heroin-deaths-on-the-rise-in-orange-county-sheriff-says/30245270

West News

Drug Overdose Deaths Down in New Mexico
Albuquerque Journal
December 13, 2014

New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez said the state's drug overdose deaths have dropped significantly. For the first time since 1992, New Mexico did not rank first or second in the nation for its drug overdose fatalities. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that the state's overdose death rate fell 16 percent between 2011 and 2013.

Read more:
http://www.abqjournal.com/512109/abqnewsseeker/drug-overdose-deaths-down-in-new-mexico.html

Other Resources

Medication Disposal Site Search Tool Now Available on AWARErx.org
Pharmacy Times
December 16, 2014

AWARXE has launched a medication disposal location-based search tool. The tool provides patients with a list and map of the closest medication disposal sites. AWARXE recommends disposing of unused, unwanted, or expired drugs in a timely fashion. If local disposal sites are not available, the program suggests following local or Food and Drug Administration guidelines for disposing of unwanted medications.

Read more:
http://www.awarerx.org/get-informed/find-disposal-information
http://bit.ly/1xrsO7t

Funding Opportunities

Fledgling Public Health Foundation to Offer First Grants
Eric Dietrich, Bozman Daily Chronicle
December 18, 2014

The Montana Healthcare Foundation announced plans to provide $1.3 million in grants to local and tribal health departments beginning March 2015. Funds will be distributed with assistance from the Montana Department of Health and Human Services and can be used to assess community concerns, develop a plan to address those issues, or implement a health promotion program.

Read more:
http://www.bozemandailychronicle.com/news/health/fledgling-public-health-foundation-to-offer-first-grants/article_00434800-8653-11e4-b587-e35cf762b407.html

Prescription Drug Monitoring Program
Texas State Board of Pharmacy
Bid Date: January 5, 2015, 4 p.m.
http://www.texasbids.net/bid-opportunities/2014/12/09/6015987-Prescription-Drug-Monitoring-Program.html

Take-Back Events and Drop Boxes

Ledyard Police Collect 219 Pounds of Prescription Drugs
Jaimie Cura, Ledyard Patch (Connecticut)
December 15, 2014
http://patch.com/connecticut/ledyard/ledyard-police-collect-219-pounds-prescription-drugs-0

Vestavia Hills Installs New Prescription Drug Collection Unit Thanks to CVS/Pharmacy Grant
Ana Rodriquez, Alabama Media Group
December 17, 2014
http://www.al.com/news/birmingham/index.ssf/2014/12/vestavia_
hills_installs_new_pr.html


Operation Medicine Cabinet Comes to Area
Beth Dalbey, Birmingham Patch (Michigan)
December 17, 2014
http://patch.com/michigan/birmingham/operation-medicine-cabinet-comes-area-0

Police Cite Success of Drop-Off Boxes for Unwanted Prescription Drugs
Craig Anderson, Delaware State News
December 17, 2014
http://delaware.newszap.com/centraldelaware/137181-70/police-cite-success-of-drop-off-boxes-for-unwanted-prescription-drugs

Hoosiers Encouraged to Drop Off Unused Rx Drugs
Fox 59 (Indiana)
December 13, 2014
http://fox59.com/2014/12/13/hoosiers-encouraged-to-drop-off-unused-rx-drugs

Fight Drug Abuse: Drop Unused Drugs Here
Wake Forest Gazette (North Carolina)
December 17, 2014
http://wakeforestgazette.com/fight-drug-abuse-drop-unused-drugs

York County Police Help Turn Old Pills into Power
Mollie Durkin, York Dispatch (Pennsylvania)
December 14, 2014
http://www.yorkdispatch.com/breaking/ci_27137070/york-county-police-help-turn-old-pills-into

Upcoming Conferences and Workshops

SAMHSA's 11th Prevention Day
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
February 2, 2015
National Harbor, Maryland
http://forum.cadca.org/?q=node/59

25th Anniversary National Leadership Forum
Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America
February 2–5, 2015
National Harbor, Maryland
http://forum.cadca.org

National Rx Drug Abuse Summit
April 6–9, 2015
Atlanta, Georgia
http://nationalrxdrugabusesummit.org
The Weekly Update is a service provided by the SAMHSA Preventing Prescription Abuse in the Workplace Technical Assistance Center (PAW) to keep the field abreast of recent news and journal articles to assist in forming policy, research, and programs to reduce prescription drug misuse or abuse. Please note, the materials listed are not reflective of SAMHSA's or PAW's viewpoint or opinion and are not assessed for validity, reliability or quality. The Weekly Update should not be considered an endorsement of the findings. Readers are cautioned not to act on the results of single studies, but rather to seek bodies of evidence. Copyright considerations prevent PAW from providing full text of journal articles listed in the Weekly Update.