The opioid epidemic has affected many people locally and across the country. Maryland Congressman, David Trone, held a workshop where he and others on a panel briefed the community on what is taking place to tackle the issue.
It’s no secret, opioids are everywhere. The Washington County Health Department reports there have been 188 overdoses and 22 overdose deaths since January.
“The opioid catastrophe is the number one issue in America today. This is white, black, brown, rich and poor, everyone together in a bipartisan nature has to come together to address this issue, said Trone, D-Md.
Trone held a workshop where panelist, including Boyd Rutherford, the Lieutenant Governor of Maryland, discussed the problem. Rutherford says fentanyl right now is hurting the state.
“Fatalities overall are starting to make a difference, but the problem is 80 percent are related to fentanyl,” said Rutherford.
Rutherford added when governor Larry Hogan came into office, he created the heroin and opioid emergency taskforce. Rutherford is the chair of the taskforce and he says they realized they needed to work on educating kids at a younger age.
“Being able to talk about substance use disorder before you get to high school health classes, to start as early elementary school to talk about taking someone else’s medication,” said Rutherford.
Kevin Roy is the Chief Public Policy Officer of Shatterproof, a non- profit committed to ending the devastation surrounding opioids. He says the opioid epidemic is so bad that it’s affecting life-expectancy rate.
“Life expectancy in the United States has dropped for the first time since 1918. So, in a hundred years, it’s the first time life expectancy has dropped according to the CDC. The reason for that drop is primarily driven by opioid and other drug poisonings,” said Roy.
Trone and the Rutherford say they are committed to addressing the opioid epidemic.
If you’re struggling with drug addiction, visit this website: https://www.endtheaddictioncrisis.com/