Opioids

The Paloma Crisis Stabilization & Detox Center is located on Wilson Street in Martinsburg, W.Va. It's the first of its kind in Berkeley County since the 1990s.
Liz McCormick / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

It’s been more than 20 years since Martinsburg had an in-patient detox facility. That changed Friday.

The open house for the Paloma Crisis Stabilization & Detox Center attracted dozens from the community. The project took two years and was funded through a state grant of more than $1 million. The center will offer 16 beds to people with substance use disorders. It will be open 24/7.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, new data on drug use among teenagers show a rare bright spot amid the opioid crisis. Use of opioids appears to have dropped last year among high schoolers in the region. 
School officials in the Ohio Valley want to continue that trend with more school-based programs designed to help prevent substance use disorders. But as Aaron Payne reports, those programs use a new approach as officials learn from past mistakes.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, the House of Delegates has selected Delegate Roger Hanshaw as the chamber’s new presiding officer. Hanshaw took the podium over the Democrats’ choice, House Minority Leader Tim Miley. Dave Mistich has more on the past two days and the race for speaker.

Molly Born/ WVPB

In parts of Appalachia, needle exchange programs have brought controversy, and they sometimes carry a stigma that such offerings enable, or even encourage, drug use. But supporters say the practice, especially when coupled with addiction treatment options for participants, can help get them on a path to recovery.

Molly Born / WVPB

On a warm Friday afternoon in July, Fred Cox and his team set up shop on a gravel shoulder off the side of the road, where you might see someone selling summer vegetables. With its white tent, a table, some folding chairs, and brown paper bags piled in crates, the Wyoming County health department's mobile harm reduction unit was open for business for the next half-hour. Its signature offering: a traveling needle exchange offering clean needles to intravenous drug users.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, drug overdose deaths in the Ohio Valley continue to rise. And so do the risks of infectious diseases closely associated with needle drug use. Area health officials say the region’s opioid crisis is now a public health threat on multiple fronts. Aaron Payne reports that health groups with different specialties are teaming up and taking to the road to meet the challenge.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, West Virginia Public Broadcasting will cosponsor a screening of the documentary Recovery Boys tonight at University of Charleston’s Geary Auditorium. It’s part of WVPB's Recovery project – a focus on substance use disorder and the various paths to recovery. Part of this effort is sharing stories of those in recovery. Executive producer Suzanne Higgins recently visited with Kelly Strickler, of Huntington, to hear hers.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, an Ohio-based collaborative thinks journalists can play a bigger role in solving the region’s opioid crisis. Aaron Payne reports that the effort starts with listening to people in some of the hardest-hit communities.

Ohio Collaborative Seeking Solutions To Opioid Crisis

Aug 1, 2018
ReSource reporter Aaron Payne (right) and other journalists meet with community members in Belpre, OH.
Bill Ambrose / Your Voice Ohio

An Ohio-based collaborative thinks journalists can play a bigger role in solving the region’s opioid crisis. The effort starts with listening to people in some of the hardest-hit communities.

A group of about 50 people gathered in a small building at the fairgrounds in Marietta, Ohio, to share their thoughts on the region’s opioid crisis with local journalists.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, according to the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources, there are at least 11 harm reduction programs across in West Virginia that offer help to people with substance use disorders. And though there is some controversy about the practice of giving free needles to people who use illegal drugs, these programs can be successful to help get more people into long-term recovery.

West Virginia Public Broadcasting invites the public to a Charleston screening of "Recovery Boys," the latest documentary film by Academy Award-nominated director Elaine McMillion Sheldon ("Heroin(e)").

The screening takes place Wednesday, August 15 at 7 p.m. at the University of Charleston's Geary Auditorium. 

Tickets are free. RSVPs are requested at https://recoveryboyscharleston.eventbrite.com.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, state Supreme Court Justice Menis Ketchum submitted a letter of resignation to Gov. Jim Justice on Wednesday, July 11. Ketchum’s stepping down from the bench comes as the entire West Virginia Supreme Court is under investigation for possible impeachment.

Hydrocodone pills
Toby Talbot / AP

News organizations are pushing for the public release of data detailing the distribution of prescription opioids throughout the U.S., information that could show how drug manufacturers and distributors contributed to the nation’s addiction and overdose crisis.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, energy companies in the Ohio Valley have looked to China as important customers and investors in coal and natural gas. But as Brittany Patterson explains, President Trump’s escalating trade battle with China and other trading partners could have a major effect on the region’s energy sector.

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Marshall Health has begun construction on what will soon be the largest residential treatment facility in the region for women suffering from substance use disorder and their children.

In cooperation with the Huntington City Mission, Marshall Health is renovating a 15,000 square-foot building formerly known as “Project Hope.” The new project will be called Project Hope for Women and Children and is funded through a grant from the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, we’ll hear from a man who knows what it’s like to struggle and recover from drugs and alcohol. This story and more coming up on this West Virginia Morning.

Adobe Stock

A new study finds that medications used to treat opioid use disorder are greatly underutilized even though they’re proven to significantly reduce chances of opioid-related deaths. 

 

Hydrocodone pills
Toby Talbot / AP

A federal judge in Ohio will consider whether to allow public access to government data detailing years of prescription opioid painkiller shipments.

Gabby Marshall

Inside the spotless industrial kitchen at Recovery Point, a long-term drug treatment facility in Charleston, Tracy Jividen helps to cook three meals a day for the nearly 100 women she calls her sisters. This space is her domain, and the irony isn’t lost on her: Last winter, she was stealing so she could eat.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, President Trump has told the Department of Energy to stop the pending closure of some economically struggling coal-fired and nuclear power plants. As Brittany Patterson reports, energy analysts say that would raise bills for consumers and would likely come too late to help facilities in the Ohio Valley.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

A new study from the Government Accountability Office finds that the federal fund supporting coal miners with black lung disease could be in financial trouble without congressional action. As Benny Becker reports, the GAO found that the fund’s debt could rise dramatically at the same time that black lung disease is surging.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Moring, Kandi Messinger is a health educator for WVU Cabell County Extension Service. She teaches a nutrition and cooking basics class for those going through the Cabell County drug courts program. Kara Lofton spoke with Messinger about why alternative education and life skills training is an important piece of recovery.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, the U.S. Surgeon General recently issued an advisory, encouraging more Americans to carry the overdose reversing drug naloxone. It comes in the form of an injection or a nasal spray, known as Narcan, and is regularly carried by firefighters, EMTs and police officers. As a part of a series on the ripple effects of the opioid crisis, StateImpact Ohio’s Ashton Marra reports the antidote is also becoming more and more common in Ohio schools.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, Gov. Jim Justice called legislators back into session this week to fix laws passed during the regular legislative session. But addressing flaws in the state’s medical cannabis program wasn’t on the special session call. As Dave Mistich reports, Democrats are working outside the regular lawmaking process to fix the law anyway.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, researchers at Murray State University in Kentucky released a pair of studies that found illicit substances in some water sources in the region. One study profiled contamination in wastewater and river waters. The other estimated consumption rates during special events. Cory Sharber of  WKMS reports.

Officials from various drugmakers answer questions on Capitol Hill Tuesday, May 8, 2018.
Alex Brandon / Associated Press

Lawmakers of both parties accused wholesale pharmaceutical distributors on Tuesday of missing signs of suspicious activity that resulted in hundreds of millions of prescription opioid pills being shipped to West Virginia, a state disproportionately ravaged by deaths caused by the addictive drugs.

A few months ago, Kourtnaye Sturgeon helped save someone's life. She was driving in downtown Indianapolis when she saw people gathered around a car on the side of the road. Sturgeon pulled over and a man told her there was nothing she could do: Two men had overdosed on opioids and appeared to be dead.

"I kind of recall saying, 'No man, I've got Narcan,' " she says, referring to the brand- name version of the opioid overdose antidote, naloxone. "Which sounds so silly, but I'm pretty sure that's what came out."

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Senator Joe Manchin’s office released a report today that found in 2016, the economic cost of the opioid epidemic in West Virginia was more than 8.7 billion dollars.

Nationwide, the economic cost of the opioid crisis is more than 500 billion, according to a 2017 report from the Council for Economic Advisors.  The brief from Manchin’s office relied heavily on the CEA report to draw conclusions about the financial impact on West Virginia.

Prescriptions, Pills, Drugs, Prescription
U.S. Air Force

Drugmakers would be required to identify the legitimate need for controlled substances to justify their production under a proposed rule intended to rein in the diversion of drugs for illicit purposes.

The Drug Enforcement Administration announced the proposed rule change Tuesday.

Drugs, Drug abuse, Drug overdose, overdose
Pixabay

Cabell County is leading West Virginia in the number of fatal overdoses for the second year in a row.

Citing state data, the Charleston Gazette-Mail reports 909 people died of drug overdoses in West Virginia in 2017, an increase from the previous record of 887, set in 2016. Overdose deaths seemed to slow during late 2017, though the state Health Statistics Center says that could be due to reporting delays.

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