WYSO

Drugs

Federal officials are charging 60 defendants across five states in what they're calling the largest opioid prescriber takedown ever. These are the first arrests announced since an opioid strike force began late last year.

Yellow Springs' new 50,000-square-foot medical marijuana cultivation facility will produce a variety of medically sanctioned products, including edibles and sprays.
April Laissle / WYSO

The first of several medical marijuana dispensaries is about a month away from opening for business in Springfield. Pure Ohio Wellness LLC would be the first to open in Southwest Ohio. 

A few other dispensaries are already operating in other parts of the state. Some Dayton addiction centers say they have concerns as the dispensaries begin operations.

Federal money to fight the opioid crisis nearly doubled in the last two years, according to a national think tank’s new report analyzing that funding.

The opioid epidemic has touched the lives of thousands of people across the Miami Valley. As part of our coverage of the crisis, WYSO wanted to know what our listeners wanted to know. We collected dozens of questions, a lot of them from people wondering how best to help a loved one struggling with addiction or recovery, and how to find support for themselves.

close up of bars in a jail cell
Michael Coghlan / Flickr Creative Commons

Voters have rejected Ohio Ballot Issue One.

The state constitutional amendment would have changed the way some low-level drug-related crimes are handled, changing drug-possession felonies to misdemeanors.

Supporters say it would have also reduced prison overcrowding for certain low-level drug offenders and help reduce prison spending.

Opponents argued Issue 1 would create a burden on the court system and make it more difficult to prosecute some drug cases. 

Opioid, The Springfield Regional Medical Center is one of 39 area collaborating hospitals and health organizations  in the GDAHA.
Renee Wilde / WYSO

In Springfield, most calls to the city’s 911 emergency switchboard are related to an opioid overdose.

Some overdose victims will die. Many others will be saved with the fast-acting overdose reversal drug Narcan.

But, for some surviving overdose victims, that’s not the end of the story. An overdose can leave behind lasting mental and physical scars, advocates say.

The​ ​drug​ ​Narcan​ ​can​ ​seem​ ​like​​ ​magic​.​ ​Just​ ​one shot​ ​of​ ​the​ ​powerful​ medicine ​can​ ​literally​ ​bring​ ​an overdose victim ​back​ ​from​ ​the​ ​dead.​

Naloxone
www.drugs.com

Accidental drug overdose deaths have decreased in Montgomery County over the past few months, according to a new report from the Community Overdose Action Team task force. But, that doesn’t necessarily mean fewer people are grappling with drug addiction, officials say.

The number of Montgomery County overdose deaths fell by more than half between May and August of this year, from 80 to 38 per month.  

Pic from right: Gail Dafler, prevention specialist Goodwill Easter Seals Miami Valley (GWESMV); Dawn Cooksey, director of Behavioral Health Services GWESMV;   Helen Jones-Kelley, executive director, Montgomery County Alcohol, Drug Addiction & Mental Healt
ADAMHS

Officials with Montgomery County Alcohol, Drug Addiction and Mental Health Services (ADAMHS) say around 75 percent of people addicted to opioids first became hooked through a doctor’s prescription.

 

That high percentage prompted ADAMHS, Kroger pharmacies and Goodwill Easter Seals to collaborate on a new effort to distribute free drug-disposal bags.

 

Officials say the bags offer a safe, cost-effective and environmentally responsible solution to eliminate unwanted opioid prescription drugs.

Flickr Creative Commons User Reneek_

The Cincinnati City Council has approved funding in the city's 2018 budget for a needle exchange program aimed at stopping the spread of HIV and hepatitis C by intravenous drug users. 

  The council voted last week to provide $150,000 to the program based at the University of Cincinnati. City money will pay for at least four mobile sites served by a van.

The program had been funded by a 20-county nonprofit health agency called Interact for Health. A Cincinnati councilman began pushing for city funding of the needle exchange program after grant money dried up.

Naloxone
www.drugs.com

The state pharmacy board says two-thirds of Ohio's retail pharmacies now offer the drug overdose antidote naloxone without a prescription.

Giant Eagle and Rite Aid stores were recently added to the list, increasing the number to 1,374 pharmacies in 84 of Ohio's 88 counties. The counties not represented are Holmes, Morgan, Noble and Vinton counties.

Pages