Have you heard the great news?
New England state officials are reporting that deaths related to opioid overdoses have decreased compared to previous years. Deaths in Massachusetts were down 10% through September 2017. Rhode Island cites a 9% drop, and Vermont is also projecting a slight decrease.
MA Department of Public Health Commissioner Dr. Monica Bharel said, “We’re seeing signs of progress”, while Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo called the report a “ray of hope.”
Copy that, for sure! After years of skyrocketing deaths due to heroin and painkiller overdose, this may be one of the greatest gifts of the 2017 Holiday Season!
States refer to several trends contributing to the decline: the increased use of overdose reversal medicine, Naloxone (aka Narcan), enhanced treatment, and greater public awareness for the opioid epidemic.
MORE Advertising has had the privilege of producing multiple opioid awareness and education campaigns for the Commonwealth, e.g., Make the Right Call, StateWithoutStigma, and Stop Addiction in its Tracks. Our most recent campaign, Stop Addiction before It Starts, targeted parents who seek advice about protecting their children from opioid misuse.
Speaking of MORE’s involvement in raising awareness about opioids, agency President and Managing Partner Judi Haber said in an interview for WCVB-TV’s Chronicle, “At the end of the day, if we can create a campaign that makes a difference, we’ve done our job.”
The job’s not completely done, of course, but the effort appears to be paying off. And that’s great news!