Opioids: Turning the Tide in the Crisis

Credit Layne Gerbig / WKSU

Day after day, week after week, the headlines in Northeast Ohio and across much of the country contain news of tragic loss:  lives lost to opioids. It’s a problem that knows no bounds:  geography, race, gender, level of education or income.

The problem took on new urgency this summer as the powerful elephant sedative, Carfentanil, began hitting the streets.  First responders armed with their only weapon, the overdose antidote Naloxone, have struggled to keep up with what’s become an overwhelming problem. It’s an issue that’s straining public and social resources.  What has become clear is that business as usual is not going to fix the problem.

WKSU news has been covering the unfolding crisis. Tuesdays during Morning Edition, the WKSU news team digs even deeper.  WKSU reporters will examine what’s led us here and what might be done to turn the tide.  

Support for Opioids: Turning the Tide in the Crisis comes from Wayne Savings Community Bank, Kent State University Office of Continuing and Distance Education, Hometown Grocery Delivery, Mercy Medical Center, AxessPointe Community Health Center, Community Support Services, Inc., Medina County District Library and Hudson Community First.

Ways to Connect

Dr. Mark Hurst, Ohio Department of Health
Tim Rudell / WKSU

The deadline to submit new-tech ideas to the state of Ohio to fight the opioid crisis is growing near.

The challenge includes $8 million in awards and grants. It kicked-off Oct. 18th, with proposals to be in no later than Dec. 15th. 

Dr. Mark Hurst is medical director of the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services.  He says hundreds of submissions are already in and the best of those, and of the hundreds more that are expected, will receive awards.

photo of opioids
DIMITRIS KALOGEROPOYLOS / FLICKR

A new report in the Journal of the American Medical Association gauges the effectiveness of opioids for pain relief, and WKSU’s Kabir Bhatia reports on what researchers found out about the highly addictive medications.

photo of Mary Taylor
ANDY CHOW / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

Ohio’s Lieutenant Governor - who is running for the Republican nomination for governor next year - is pushing a plan to deal with opioids that some consider unusual, especially given her opposition to Medicaid expansion.

GEORGE S. BARRETT
CARDINAL HEALTH

Ohio’s largest company – which has been named in a number of lawsuits and exposés over the opioid drug crisis – is making changes at the top. For Ohio Public Radio, WKSU’s M.L. Schultze has more on Cardinal Health.

photo of Attorney General Mike DeWine
KAREN KASLER / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

Ohio’s attorney general says the state needs to be doing more to fight the opioid crisis, which last year killed an average of 11 Ohioans a day. He says he’s putting pressure on the drug companies the state is already suing.

Pages