The growing issue with prescription opioid medication has led many states to create new laws and ways to govern its citizens to keep them as safe as possible from the opiate epidemic. In Virginia, health officials, law enforcement and other officials from 6 different states all met for the Appalachian Opioid Summit. The conference’s main purpose is to discuss several problems involving the opioid abuse issue.
The conference was filled with educational information and also got neighboring states together to go over better ways to combat the black market from funneling drugs between multiple states.
The epidemic is the same in every state. It does not matter what your social background is or where you come from, the issue bleeds into every state in the country. With more states equipped and on the same page, they will be able to better help citizens in their respective states and can set legislation that is similar. When you have similar laws in surrounding states it is easier for law enforcement to work together on the legal side of the epidemic. Drugs cross borders on a daily basis and if they can make the process of catching the drugs any easier, then it is a win for all parties involved.
The conference brought together a group of professionals that were able to discuss different ideas and plans they have for their respective states. Conferences like this bring together professionals that are able to learn from each other and make a stronger case to curb the epidemic in their state.
With opiates taking more and more lives each day and with no end in sight, we all need to start educating the public and giving our time to those in need. The mass amount of people in the country who have not been directly affected by the opiate epidemic will most likely know someone in the next 5 years that will have a battle or lose a battle to the drugs. If we can get to our young teens soon enough and teach them the basics about the dangers of prescription opioid medications, you will deter would be heroin addicts of the future from ever entering that dangerous lifestyle.
Expect to see more conferences happening between neighboring states around the country. As more and more states gather and go over their plans for a better fight against opioid abuse, the more lives that will be touched and hopefully saved. Education needs to be the top priority for states because if you can get to them before the abuse starts, you will have a much higher success rate. Once the abuse has started, addicts have a very hard time seeking and finding treatment for a variety of reasons.