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October 16, 2013

SAMHSA Prescription Drug Abuse Weekly Update

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 Journal Articles and Reports News Other State and Local News Other Resources Videos Grants Received Take-Back Events and Drop Boxes Upcoming Conferences and Workshops


J. Levi, L.M. Segal, and A. Fuchs Miller. 2013. "Prescription Drug Abuse: Strategies to Stop the Epidemic." Trust for America's Health.

With funding from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Trust for America's Health worked with a range of partners and experts to identify 10 promising policies and approaches for reducing prescription drug abuse in the United States. This report evaluates states on the 10 approaches. New Mexico and Vermont received the highest score with all 10 indicators achieved, while South Dakota scored the lowest with 2 out of 10. Twenty-eight states and Washington, D.C. scored a 6 or less out of 10. Less than half of states (22) have laws that require or recommend education for doctors and other healthcare providers who prescribe prescription pain medication; more than one third (17 and Washington, D.C.) have a law in place to expand access to and use of naloxone by lay administrators; and more than one third (17 and Washington, D.C.) have laws to grant immunity from criminal charges or mitigation of sentencing for people who help themselves or others experiencing an overdose. Prescription drug monitoring programs vary in funding, use, and capability. Washington, D.C. and 24 states participate in Medicaid Expansion, which helps expand coverage of substance abuse services and treatment.

The report also documents prescription overdose rates by state over time. Appalachia and the Southwest had the highest prescription drug overdose death rates; Midwestern states had the lowest rates. West Virginia had an overdose death rate of 28.9 per 100,000 people—up 605 percent from 1999 and the highest in the nation. North Dakota had the lowest rate of 3.4 per 100,000. From 1999 to 2010, overdose death rates quadrupled in Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, and West Virginia; tripled in 10 states; and doubled in 29 more. The mean rate among all states was 13 per 100,000 in 2010—double the rate of 6 per 100,000 in 1999. Finally, the report recommended increasing understanding of safe medication storage and proper disposal; modernizing and fully funding prescription drug monitoring programs so they are real time, interstate, and incorporated into Electronic Health Records; and expanding access to, and availability of, effective treatment options.

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Related Resource
Interactive: Prescription Drug Abuse
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
October 7, 2013

This interactive resource shows state-by-state prescription drug overdose death rates and provides each state's scoring on the 10 key steps to curb abuse.

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EMPLOYERS(R) Opioid Program Shows Results in Curbing Prescription Painkiller Addiction
The Wall Street Journal
October 7, 2013

EMPLOYERS, a small business insurance specialist, completed the pilot test of a program to prevent prescription opioid abuse. The program reduced the amount of medically unnecessary opioids prescribed and the time required to wean injured workers off them. It resulted in millions of dollars saved over the past 18 months. EMPLOYERS' opioid program takes proactive measures to help control the flow of narcotics within the workers' compensation claim. Its approach involves the workers' compensation insurance carrier, injured employees, workers' compensation physicians, and pharmacy benefit managers. The first program prong focuses on training physicians to recognize signs of opioid abuse and encourages them to consider other effective pain management alternatives. The second prong publicizes network physicians who successfully return injured workers to their jobs without overprescribing opioid pain medications. The third prong involves stepped-up drug testing by prescribers that enables earlier detection of potential abuse and diversion.

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Journal Articles and Reports

M. McCarthy. 2013. "Maine Allows Importation of Mail Order Prescription Drugs." BMJ 347:f6159. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.f6159.

On October 9, a state law went into effect in Maine allowing residents to obtain prescriptions by mail order from pharmacies in Canada, the United Kingdom, New Zealand, and Australia. Although the practice violates federal law, federal authorities have rarely gone after consumers.

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Related Article
Maine to Allow Prescription-Drug Imports
The Wall Street Journal
October 9, 2013

Maine's new law, the first of its kind, sanctions the direct purchase of mail-order drugs from some foreign pharmacies, helping employers and workers cut costs. Pharmaceutical companies filed a lawsuit stating the practice could expose residents to tainted or counterfeit medication and interferes with Food and Drug Administration oversight. Maine officials said they are confident residents are getting legitimate medication through well-regulated supply chains, even though some Canadian pharmacies have outsourced prescriptions from Americans to operations in Turkey and India. Pharmacists want the court to clarify that drug importation is illegal.

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S. Strobbe. 2013. "Addressing Substance Use in Primary Care." The Nurse Practitioner 38(9):1-9. doi:10.1097/01.NPR.0000433078.14775.15.

Problematic use of alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs, including prescription medications, contributes to increased risk for injury, illness, suffering, and premature death across the lifespan. Nurse practitioners can positively affect the health of patients, their families, and communities by addressing substance use and related disorders in primary care settings.

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How to Know Your Online Pharmacy Is Safe
ABC News
October 9, 2013

A Food and Drug Administration survey shows one in four adult U.S. Internet consumers has purchased prescription drugs online. Of that group, nearly one third said they lacked confidence about how to safely purchase medicine from online pharmacies. This article and video (2:31 minutes) discuss the risks of purchasing prescription drugs online and how to determine if an online pharmacy is legitimate. A legitimate pharmacy will ask for a valid prescription from a doctor.

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PCMA: 'Safe Rx Initiative' Offers Policy Solutions to Curb Prescription Drug Abuse and Fraud
Pharmaceutical Care Management Association
Accessed October 8, 2013

The Pharmaceutical Care Management Association (PCMA) issued a list of policy solutions to reduce prescription drug abuse and fraud in the Medicare system. The "Safe Rx Initiative" sent five recommendations to Congress: (1) create safe pharmacies in Part D for controlled prescription drugs; (2) require drugstores and pharmacists to register with state prescription drug monitoring programs (PDMPs); (3) allow payers to coordinate with PDMPs; (4) implement fraud prevention tools in Part D plans; and (5) create uniform federal track-and-trace standards.

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Preventing Prescription Drug Abuse at Work
American Society of Safety Engineers
October 3, 2013

This article discusses how SAMHSA's Technical Assistance Center on the Prevention of Prescription Drug Abuse in the Workplace can assist employers in preventing prescription abuse and offers tips for preventing prescription drug misuse at work.

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Occupational Medicine Leaders Discuss Opioids and Pain Management at WOHC
Digital Journal
October 7, 2013

Robert Goldberg, past president of the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medical Association and chief medical officer at Healthesystems, organized a panel discussion on opioid and pain management at the 57th Annual Western Occupational Health Conference (WOHC), September 25–28. Goldberg presented information on the size and scope of the opioid problem and moderated a discussion on appropriate administration and monitoring of opioid drug therapy while minimizing risks for injured workers. Panel members provided evidence-based information about screening patients for opioid dependency risks, monitoring methods, therapy evaluation criteria, and guidance on when and how to discontinue opioid therapy.

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Internet Drug Outlet Identification Program Progress Report for State and Federal Regulators: July 2013
National Association of Boards of Pharmacy
Accessed October 10, 2013

This report shows nearly 97 percent (10,500) of Web sites selling prescription medications operate out of compliance with pharmacy laws and practice standards. The National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NABP) encourages consumers to consult the list of recommended sites that have been accredited by the NABP Verified Internet Pharmacy Practice SitesCM (VIPPS®) accreditation program. The list of VIPPS–accredited sites is available at www.AWARErx.org.

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Related Infographic
Is It Safe for Americans to Order Life-Saving Medicine from Online Pharmacies Overseas?
The Partnership for Safe Medicines, Alliance for Safe Online Pharmacies
Accessed October 10, 2013

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Widow Testifies to Congress About Accidental Veteran Overdoses
NBC 4i
October 10, 2013

This article and video (1:42 minutes) discuss the testimony of Heather McDonald, whose veteran husband died from an accidental drug overdose. Veterans Affairs doctors kept adding narcotics to his regimen to treat chronic physical and emotional pain. McDonald told the House Committee on Veterans Affairs that she will continue to fight for change.

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Rx Abuse Prevention for Children: A New Pilot Program
Pharmacy Times
October 8, 2013

The National Association of Drug Diversion Investigators (NADDI) announced a new program to educate young children about drug safety and abuse. A children's coloring book features "Dougie the Drug Dog," who is trained to detect pharmaceutical drugs. The book teaches children that prescription drugs are safe when provided by their parents, grandparents, doctor, pharmacist, nurse, or another trusted adult. The inside back page is intended for parents, encouraging them to secure prescription medications in their homes. NADDI will create a newly designed coloring book and electronic applications for tablets and other devices. The organizations will unveil the prevention project during national poison week in March 2014. Their material is not evidence based.

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SAFE Training for Health Care Providers
The Progress Index
October 7, 2013

Seventy-six professionals attended the Substance Abuse Free Environment (SAFE) forum addressing prescription drug abuse. They learned how to assess risk, interpret prescription monitoring reports, and plan an appropriate course of action to best meet patients' needs.

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New to Drug Testing: Prescription Drug Monitoring
Quest Diagnostics
October 10, 2013

A Quest Diagnostics employee announced his plans to write a weekly column on drug testing procedures, products, and processes. The employee injured his back and required months of physical therapy, steroid injections, and surgery. After taking hydrocodone to alleviate his pain, he realized how addictive pain medication can be. Prescription drug monitoring programs and random urine drug testing are helping healthcare providers monitor patients' adherence to prescription pain medication therapies.

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NSC: Prescription Drug Overdoses Now 'National Epidemic'
Safety News Alert
October 7, 2013

The National Safety Council (NSC) adds its voice to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's designation of prescription drug overdose as a national epidemic and provides a fact sheet with recommendations for reducing the problem.

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Educating Patients in Drug Disposal
Drug Topics Newsmagazine
October 15, 2013

This article discusses the importance of educating patients about prescription drug dangers. It also provides instructions for disposing of unwanted and expired prescription medications and encouraging patients to participate in local drug take-back events. The authors believe pharmacists should be responsible for sharing this information with customers.

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United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime
World Drug Report 2013
Accessed October 8, 2013

This report provides an overview of the most recent global developments in drug production, trafficking, consumption, and associated health consequences, including prescription opioid abuse trends.

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More States Focusing on Prescription Drug Problem
USA Today
October 10, 2013

This article briefly summarizes the efforts of New York, Alabama, Indiana, Kentucky, and Washington to reduce prescription drug abuse.

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Other State and Local News

Voter Registration Added to Nationwide Prescription Drug Take-Back Day and VIN Etching/Watch Your Car Program on October 26th
The City of Takoma Park
October 8, 2013

The Takoma Park, Md., Police Department will participate in the Drug Enforcement Administration's National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day on October 26. People can drop off prescription, over-the-counter, and pet medications. The Maryland Automobile Insurance Fund will also host a Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) etching event in the police station parking lot. Election volunteers will be on hand to register voters and answer questions about voting in the November 5, 2013, city election. The Emergency Preparedness Committee will have a table with safety/emergency information. Finally, experts will be on-site to check children's car seats are secured properly in vehicles.

Read more:

Ohio Introduces Opioid Prescribing Guidelines
October 7, 2013

Ohio introduced new guidelines for providers who prescribe opioid pain medication to patients with chronic, non-terminal pain. The guidelines state providers should reevaluate effectiveness and safety before prescribing 80 milligrams of Morphine Equivalent Daily Dose (MED). They also want to increase use of the Ohio Automated Rx Reporting System (OARRS) among about 70 percent of prescribers and 80 percent of pharmacists. A new OARRS tool will help prescribers by calculating a patient's opioid prescriptions into a single score for comparison to the 80 MED threshold.

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HealthSmart Focuses on Wellness and Drug Abuse Prevention
October 9, 2013

The Seventh Annual Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce HealthSmart Expo focused on prescription drug abuse prevention. Tennett Slack, a Gainesville physician and co-chairman of the Medical Association of Georgia's "Think About It" campaign, spoke about the dangers of prescription drugs, how to prevent abuse, and how to store and dispose of prescription medications. He also urged doctors to use care when prescribing drugs.

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Campaign Begins to End Prescription Drug Abuse
The Buffalo News
October 9, 2013

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Western New York is coordinating an initiative with 50 community groups to reduce prescription drug abuse in Buffalo. The campaign will include print, radio, and billboard advertising, a Web site for referrals to services, a television documentary, and educational programming for students in middle and high school. The multimedia campaign will run through December.

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Carroll Task Force Tackling Prescription Pill Abuse
Carroll County Times
October 9, 2013

This year's Substance Abuse Awareness Program, hosted by the Carroll County, Md., Health Department, focused on prescription pill abuse and the availability of synthetic drugs. The Carroll Drug Task Force discussed its efforts to reduce prescription drug abuse throughout the county. Detective Steven Rogers launched the diversions unit by contacting 10 to 15 pharmacies. Soon, pharmacists started calling him about filling several prescriptions from multiple physicians for just one person. He began investigating people who were constantly dropping off prescriptions at pharmacies to gather large quantities of pills. Then, the county began crafting a state-mandated Opioid Overdose Prevention Plan to curb overdoses.

Read more:

State's Prescription Abuse Problem Debated
Charleston Daily Mail
October 8, 2013

The Kanawha County Substance Abuse Task Force of West Virginia debated prescription drug abuse and whether to require prescriptions for a decongestant often used in manufacturing methamphetamine. David Potters, executive director of the West Virginia Board of Pharmacy, said when it comes to prescription abuse, doctor shopping is less of a problem than sharing with family and friends for free. Carlos Guitierrez, a government relations representative for the Consumer Products Healthcare Association, argued pseudoephedrine is not addictive or heavily abused. He said 70 percent of methamphetamine produced in Mexico and later seized by U.S. agents does not contain pseudoephedrine. He reported that Oregon' meth deaths are at an all-time high. Surrounding states have experienced significant decreases in meth labs, but only Oregon requires a prescription.

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Victims of Prescription Drug Abuse Unveil 'Pee in a Cup' Video on Mobile Billboard at Doctors' Disneyland Convention to Make Case for Mandatory Drug and Alcohol Testing of Physicians, Says Consumer Watchdog
Digital Journal
October 10, 2013

Families of victims of prescription drug abuse, physician overprescribing, and medical malpractice called for mandatory drug testing of doctors at the California Medical Association Convention. The nonprofit Consumer Watchdog group unveiled a mobile billboard truck showing "Pee in a Cup: The Musical, Part 1," the first in a series of musical videos pressing for mandatory doctor drug testing in California. These 30-second videos will be shown over the course of the convention weekend. 

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Iowa Medicine TLC Statewide Public Education Program Kicks Off to Prevent Teen Medicine Misuse and Abuse
Digital Journal
October 9, 2013

As part of October Medicine Misuse and Abuse Prevention Month, the Iowa Substance Abuse Information Center and Governor's Office of Drug Control Policy launched Iowa Medicine TLC: Talk, Lock, and Connect, a public education program to prevent teen prescription and over-the-counter drug misuse and abuse. The Partnership Attitude Tracking Study (PATS) showed respondents believe the most effective way to prevent Iowa teens from misusing or abusing medicines is for parents to discuss the dangers with their kids. PATS found only 14 percent of parents have discussed prescription drug misuse and abuse with their teens, as opposed to about 80 percent of parents who talk to their teens about alcohol and marijuana.

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Related Article
Cedar Rapids Teen Tells Her Drug Abuse Story at Prescription Awareness Event
The Gazette
October 9, 2013

During a kick-off event for Iowa Medicine TLC: Talk, Lock, and Connect, Taryn Erbes, a 17-year-old student, shared her story about prescription drug addiction. She used Xanax and OxyContin to deal with her depression, thinking the medicine was safer than street drugs. When Taryn was hospitalized, she asked to be committed to an in-patient treatment program.

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How New York's Getting More Out of Its Drug Monitoring Program
October 7, 2013

This article discusses how technology may determine effectiveness of prescription drug monitoring programs. It mentions New York State's newly upgraded I-STOP as an example. The updated report is more complete and includes all controlled substances prescribed by each doctor. The law also allows more people to access the system, including pharmacists. Doctors can designate others to do the search and audit searches later. The database also provides a link to a list of substance abuse treatment providers. Officials have seen a difference in usage since making the upgrade. Almost 12,000 people used the system between June 12 and August, whereas only 5,000 had accessed it over the prior 3 1/2 years.

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Nygren Proposes Bills to Combat Heroin Use, Addiction in Wisconsin
Green Bay Press-Gazette
October 4, 2013

Wisconsin Representative John Nygren, R-Marinette, unveiled four bills intended to reduce prescription drug and heroin abuse. One bill requires people who pick up prescription narcotics at the pharmacy to show identification. Another limits liability for those who call 911 to report an overdose. A third bill would make it easier to drop off narcotics at community drug disposal programs. The fourth would allow more first responders and emergency medical technicians to administer Narcan.

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Missouri Just Says 'No' to Tracking Drug Prescriptions
The Kansas City Star
October 8, 2014

Missouri is the only state that does not have a prescription drug monitoring program, and the overdose death rate is the seventh highest in the country. Last year, the Missouri General Assembly considered drug monitoring legislation, but Senator Rob Schaff opposed giving patients' private medical information to a state-run database. He introduced his own monitoring program bill with the provision that constituents vote on it, but the bill did not make it far.

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Commissioners, Mayor Proclaim October as Prescription Drug and Heroin Abuse Awareness Month
Logan Daily News
October 11, 2013

During the Opiate Abuse Prevention Town Hall meeting, Hocking County, Ohio, Commissioners and Logan Mayor adopted and signed a proclamation declaring October as Prescription Drug and Heroin Abuse Awareness Month. They wanted to call attention to the problem and educate community members about how to reduce prescription drug abuse.

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Managing Opioid Overuse: A Case
October 9, 2013

In this video (8:47 minutes) and transcript, Charles E. Argoff, Professor at Albany Medical College and Director of the Comprehensive Pain Management Center, shares his views about a case of chronic pain and opioid overuse.

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Prescription Drug Abuse Group Proposed
Nashoba Publishing
October 11, 2013

Therese LaRose, who works with the Lowell Health Department in Massachusetts, asked the Board of Health for support starting a subcommittee to raise awareness about prescription drug abuse. The board members agreed to send a letter to various town officials gauging their interest in participating. LaRose volunteered to chair the subcommittee.

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Drug Overdoses on Rise in Virginia, Maryland
October 10, 2013

Maryland and Virginia have seen a recent increase in fatal overdoses from methadone, heroin, and LSD, especially among high school students.

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Taking Fight Against Prescription Drug Abuse to Next Level Through Free Provider Education
October 9, 2013

The Pennsylvania Medical Society launched its "Pills for Ills, Not Thrills" campaign designed to raise awareness of problems associated with pill-seeking doctor shoppers. The society also developed a free series of six 1-hour webinars to help educate physicians and other health care providers on appropriate use of long-acting and extended-release opioids. The webinars will cover prescribing, monitoring, assessment, and documentation. Participants who complete an assessment at the end of the sixth Webinar will receive a certificate of completion.

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'Out of Reach'—Medicine Abuse Through the Eyes of a Teen
The Partnership at Drugfree.org
Access October 10, 2013

The movie trailer (1:26 minutes) for Out of Reach captures prescription drug abuse through the eyes of a teen filmmaker. Details are available on sharing the full film and an accompanying toolkit.

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The Price of Addiction: How a New ER Tool Will Track Drug Abusers and Save Money (Series)
Portland Business Journal
October 10, 2013

The Emergency Department Information Exchange (EDIE) may soon link participating hospitals through an online system, giving doctors access to a patient's real-time clinical and utilization data. The system flags patients who have reached a threshold number of emergency room visits in a given time period—doctors can instantly see if someone is a heavy user of the emergency room. EDIE is expected to improve care and save money and the effort will move forward if 45 of Oregon's 59 hospitals enlist by October 31. It will take 1 year to fully implement the system.

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Majority of R.I.'s Unintentional, Fatal Overdoses in 2012 Involved Prescription Drugs, State Study Finds
Providence Journal
October 8, 2013

The Rhode Island Department of Health reported more than 180 people died last year from unintentional drug overdose—mostly from prescription drugs. Researchers analyzed records from the state medical examiner's office that looked at the impact of prescription drugs on mortality rates in Rhode Island during the last 4 years. In 2012, about 65 percent of the 182 drug overdose deaths (119) involved use of prescription drugs—either alone or in combination with alcohol and/or illicit drugs. Rhode Island ranked 13 in the country for drug overdose mortality rate, according to Trust for America's Health. It scored 8 out of 10 on prevention indicators for laws and initiatives. Mixing alcohol with prescription medications may be contributing to the high rate as well as the lack of providers who offer Suboxone and Narcan.

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As Painkillers Become Harder to Get, Heroin Death Rate More Than Doubles for Staten Islanders
Staten Island Advance
October 9, 2013

Some Staten Island addicts are turning to heroin because pain relievers are more expensive on the black market. As a result, 34 Staten Islanders died of a heroin overdose in 2012, compared with 22 in 2011 and 14 in 2010. Pain reliever overdoses decreased in 2012; there were 36 deaths compared with 40 in 2011 and 31 in 2010. Citywide, heroin deaths increased 68 percent, from 209 in 2010 to 352 in 2012. Staten Island also surpassed the other four boroughs in per capita heroin deaths, with 10.2 fatal heroin overdoses per 100,000 people. Last month, the Health Department held a training session on using Narcan at the Staten Island Health and Wellness Expo. It has begun distributing Narcan kits to high-risk populations.

Read more:

Number of Drug Addicted Babies Climbs in Tennessee
Times Free Press
October 9, 2013

The Tennessee Department of Health reported that 643 babies were born dependent on prescription pain relievers by the first week of October, compared with 629 total in 2011. About 42 percent of the mothers only used substances prescribed to them for legitimate treatment, while 33 percent used substances obtained through illegal sources. Twenty percent used a mix of prescribed and non-prescribed substances.

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16 Douglas Students Ill from Prescription Drug, Official Says
Tucson News Now
October 4, 2013

The Arizona Poison and Drug Information Center confirmed 16 students from Ray Borane Middle School ingested Clonidine, a prescription drug used to treat high blood pressure or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. A student brought the drugs to school and shared them with others.

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Students Abuse Adderall for Weight Loss
Old Gold and Black Newspaper, Wake Forest University
October 11, 2013

College students are abusing Adderall, not only to enhance academic performance, but also as a weight loss supplement. The drug reportedly increases metabolism and suppresses appetite. A 2011 survey of Wake Forest University upperclassmen found 14.9 percent of students have abused non-prescribed stimulants within the last 12 months.

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Drug Use on Rise Among Fairfax Teens, Survey Finds
The Washington Post
October 7, 2013

The Fairfax County, Virginia, Youth Survey discovered use of illicit drugs, prescription drug abuse, and incidence of depression have increased among Fairfax County teenagers. The survey polled more than 32,000 students in 8th, 10th and 12th grade. In 2012, 6.2 percent of seniors reported using prescription medications without a physician's order, compared with 5.1 percent in 2011 and 6.5 percent in 2010. Use of steroids without a physician's instruction has also risen slightly since 2010.

Read more:

DHEC, SLED Tweak Approach on Prescription Drugs
WPDE Newschannel 15
October 8, 2013

The Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) now requires pharmacists to report all prescription drug distribution within 24 hours, instead of monthly. This will help officials quickly identify people who might be filling the same prescription in multiple counties. The South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) will assist with processing information.

Read more:

Other Resources

Ever Been Scammed?
Pennsylvania Medical Society
Accessed October 9, 2013

This educational reference booklet helps physicians identify red flags related to pill-seeking doctor shoppers, while also suggesting screening tools to separate patients with true pain. It provides resources for addiction treatment and contains information physicians can provide to patients for proper disposal of medication.

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Congress Probes Veterans' Prescription Drug Overdose Deaths
CBS Evening News
October 9, 2013

After CBS News broke the story in September that revealed returning veterans are receiving lethal amounts of pain medication from Veterans Affairs hospitals, cases of veterans who died after following doctors' orders have come to light. Now, a House Subcommittee will hold a hearing on the problem. (Duration: 2:38 minutes)

Read more:

Video: Prescription Drug Abuse in Teens
October 4, 2013

Recovering addicts and Louisville's Healing Place president discuss prescription drug abuse among teens. (Duration: 2:27 minutes)


Prescription Monitoring Program Registry Common Q&As
Jennifer Kirschenbaum
October 7, 2013

Jennifer Kirschenbaum, a healthcare attorney, discusses New York State's prescription monitoring program registry requirements and answers common questions regarding implementation and use. (Duration: 22:40 minutes)


Grants Received

2014 BJA Grant Announcements
Brandeis University Prescription Drug Monitoring Program Training and Technical Assistance
Accessed October 8, 2013

The Bureau of Justice Assistance awarded FY 2013 Harold Rogers Prescription Drug Monitoring Program Grants for implementation and enhancement to Guam, Montana, New Hampshire, New York, Oregon, and South Dakota. A Tribal Prescription Drug Monitoring Program Data Sharing Grant was awarded to the Lac Courte Oreilles Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians. Data-Driven Multi-Disciplinary Approaches to Reducing Rx Abuse Grants were awarded to the Florida Department of Health; Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, Alcohol and Drug Abuse Administration; Commonwealth of Massachusetts, Norfolk District Attorney; New York County, New York District Attorney's Office; Fairfield County Ohio; and Jackson County, Oregon.

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Take-Back Events and Drop Boxes

DEA's 7th National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day
October 26, 2013
10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Find local events by using the Drug Enforcement Administration's National Take-Back Initiative Collection Site Search database.

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Safe and Healthy Homewood Coalition Teams Up with City, Schools, Police to Host Drug Safety Awareness Campaign
October 8, 2013

The Safe and Healthy Homewood Coalition in Alabama will host drug safety events in partnership with local businesses, government, the Chamber of Commerce, and the Homewood Police Department from October 23 to 31 during Red Ribbon Week, a national drug prevention campaign. The Chamber will place red ribbons on lampposts throughout the city. Homewood Police Department will participate in its first Drug Enforcement Administration-sponsored National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day on October 26.

Read more:

Make a Difference Day—Project Medicine Drop, Oct. 26
The Alternative Press
October 8, 2013

The Middlesex County Medical Society, Medical Society of New Jersey, New Jersey Attorney General's Office, and New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs will promote "Project Medicine Drop" on October 26, national Make a Difference Day. Project Medicine Drop places secure drop boxes at local police department headquarters throughout the state. Physicians will notify their patients of local drop-off locations and are encouraged to talk to patients about proper disposal and diversion dangers.

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Ameritox Lends Support to DEA Drug Take-Back Events
Digital Journal
October 9, 2013

Ameritox, a leader in Pain Medication Monitoring Solutions, is supporting the Drug Enforcement Administration's (DEA's) National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day. Ameritox is reaching out to its employees, partners, and customers to help the DEA surpass its previous collections record. The company has also established a convenient way to find local collection sites online.

Read more:

Calcasieu Sheriff's Office and DEA to Host National Prescription Drug Take Back Day
Cajun Radio
October 10, 2013

The Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's Office in Louisiana will participate in the Drug Enforcement Administration's National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day on October 26.

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Get Rid of Old Medicine and Prescription Drugs Oct. 26
City of Fort Worth
October 8, 2013

The Drug Enforcement Administration, Ridgmar Mall, and Walgreens will collect unwanted prescription medications from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on October 26. Individuals can drop off medications at Ridgmar Mall, Saginaw Fire Station #1, Richland Hills Fire Department, Haltom City Police Department, and several Walgreens locations. Fort Worth, Texas, residents can dispose of medicine year-round at permanent drop boxes in three police stations.

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Harford County Office of Drug Control Policy Announces Prescription Drug Take Back Day
The Dagger
October 6, 2013

The Harford County, Md., Department of Community Services' Office of Drug Control Policy will participate in the National Prescription Drug Take-Back Initiative. The county will have three drop-off locations for unused and expired medicines.

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'Drop' Those Prescription Drugs in Secure Drug Drop Boxes
Delaware County News Network
October 8, 2013

Delaware County is installing "Delco Medicine Drop" boxes at nine police departments: Darby Township, Haverford, Marple, Radnor, Ridley Township, Springfield, Tinicum, Upper Chichester, and Upper Darby. A 10th box is located in the Delaware County Government Center. Delaware County will also participate during National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day.

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Sheriff's Department to Participate in Prescription Drug Take-Back Day
Fox 40
October 7, 2013

The Sacramento County, Calif., Sheriff's Department will participate in the Drug Enforcement Administration's National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day on October 26. Individuals may drop off medications at four collection sites.

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National Prescription Drug Take Back Day
Hansom Air Force Base
October 9, 2013

The Air Force Office of Special Investigations Joint Drug Enforcement Team, 66th Security Forces Squadron, and 66th Medical Squadron Pharmacy will participate in National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day. Individuals may drop off medication in the Army and Air Force Exchange Service lobby.

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14,000 Pills Collected in Operation Medicine Drop
The Herald-Sun
October 4, 2013

Durham County Sheriff's Office and the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) recently collected 13,690 pills and 50 pounds of over-the-counter medications from NIEHS employees during Operation Medicine Drop.
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National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day Scheduled for Fort Bend Independent School District
Houston Chronicle
October 4, 2013

Fort Bend Independent School District will participate in National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day on October 26. Individuals may dispose of prescription medications at the Mercer Stadium parking lot in Sugar Land, Texas.

Read more:

Prescription Drug Take-Back Event
Spokane Regional Hospital District
Accessed October 10, 2013

Spokane Valley Police and the Spokane County, Wash., Sheriff's Office will participate during National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day. People can drop off medications at two locations: Washington State Employees Credit Union and North Spokane Library.

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Drug Drop Off
Troy Daily News
October 5, 2013

The Miami County, Ohio, Sheriff's Office has a drug drop-off box available during normal business hours. In addition, the Sheriff's Office will host four annual drug drop-off events. The next one will take place on October 26, 2013, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Read more:

Save the Date: Prescription Drug Take-Back Event
Vienna Patch
October 9, 2013

The Vienna, Va., Police Department will participate in the Drug Enforcement Administration's National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day. Medications can be dropped off (except for intravenous solutions, injectables, and syringes).

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Drug Take Back Day in October
October 10, 2013

The Maryland State Police will participate in National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day on October 26. Individuals may drop off medications at state police barracks throughout the state.

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National Prescription Drug Take Back on Oct. 26
October 4, 2013

The Tri-County Community Coalition will participate in National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day. Individuals may dispose of prescription medications in Bay City, Texas.

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Upcoming Conferences and Workshops

Prescription Drug Abuse: An Epidemic
October 22, 2013
6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
The Elements Conference and Event Center
11974 Lebanon Road
Cincinnati, Ohio 45241

This seminar will address various issues, including prescription fraud, drug diversion, and management of patients on chronic opioid therapy.

Read more:

Heroin in Kentucky Headlines
October 24, 2013
Richmond, Kentucky

CFPC's Annual Substance Abuse Conference: Our Drug Epidemic
November 1, 2013
Andover, New Jersey

2013 American Association for Treatment of Opioid Dependence Conference
November 9–13, 2013
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

11th Annual World Health Care Congress
April 7–9, 2014
National Harbor, Maryland

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.