October is National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month

Last Friday marked the start of National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month (NMAAM), an educational initiative sponsored by Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America and the Consumer Healthcare Products Association that aims to help parents and youth understand the risks of medication misuse and highlight community-level prevention efforts. Coalitions, organizations, and individuals are encouraged to join the monthlong campaign by participating in the Dose of Prevention Challenge, which provides opportunities for community engagement through virtual events and other activities. More information about the initiative, including how to join the Dose of Prevention Challenge and where to access social media toolkits, resources on misuse and prevention strategies, and case studies of successful community efforts, can be found here.

Articles & Resources

NMAAM Website

DEA Issues Public Safety Alert on Counterfeit Pills Containing Fentanyl

On September 27th, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) issued their first public safety alert in six years to warn Americans about the increase in availability of counterfeit prescription pills that contain lethal doses of fentanyl. These pills, which are manufactured to look like real prescription opioid medications, are often sold online via social media and e-commerce platforms. The DEA has seized over 9.5 million counterfeit pills in 2021 so far – more than the previous two years combined – and found that two out of every five pills that contained fentanyl had lethal doses of fentanyl. In a press release, DEA Administrator Anne Milgram said, “DEA is focusing resources on taking down the violent drug traffickers causing the greatest harm and posing the greatest threat to the safety and health of Americans. Today, we are alerting the public to this danger so that people have the information they need to protect themselves and their children.” To educate the public on the dangers of counterfeit pills, DEA also launched the One Pill Can Kill Public awareness campaign and developed a fact sheet that outlines ways the public can identify counterfeit pills.

Articles & Resources

DEA – DEA Issues Public Safety Alert on Sharp Increase in Fake Prescription Pills Containing Fentanyl and Meth

DEA – One Pill Can Kill

Fact sheet

What We Read Last Week

Several articles were published last week pertaining to the opioid epidemic, covering a variety of different components of the issue. Links to relevant articles are provided below.

Articles & Resources

Bloomberg Government – Rhode Island Becomes Latest State To Appeal Sackler Deal — Market Talk

FDA – Miami Man Sentenced for Healthcare Fraud Kickback Scheme

Federation of State Medical Boards – Health Care Regulatory Board Launch Collaborative Effort Aimed at Opioid Epidemic

Harvard Medical School – Poverty, homelessness, and social stigma make addiction more deadly

NPR – Paying People Addicted To Meth Even A Small Sum Of Money Can Help Them Stop Using

NPR – The Purdue Pharma Deal Would Deliver Billions, But Individual Payouts Will Be Small

Psychology Today – The Connection Between Trauma and Addiction

Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith – Hyde-Smith Backs Bill to Give Police High-Tech Devices to Detect Fentanyl, Illegal Drugs

Senator Shelley Moore Capito – Capito, Manchin Announce $15 Million for Mental Health, Substance Abuse Services in West Virginia

STAT – As lawsuits mounted, Purdue cultivated conversations with a controversial addiction policy group

STAT – Overdose prevention sites can save lives and promote recovery. We must be willing to try them

The Hill – Drug distributors paying $75M to resolve Cherokee Nation opioid epidemic claims

The Washington Post – Snapchat, TikTok, Instagram face pressure to stop illegal drug sales as overdose deaths soar

Tufts University – Tracking the Shifting Landscape of the Opioid Crisis

University of Michigan – U-M lab awarded $13.2M grant to help thwart substance abuse disorders

This Week’s Calendar

In the week ahead, there are no relevant events or hearings noticed at this time. In the event that there are any changes to the schedule for this week, we will make additional information available.

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