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Opioid crisis in Adair County

By Mary Bardin

Attorney General Daniel Cameron won a lawsuit against drug companies such as Mckesson that manufactures Opioids. The amount won for Kentucky was $483 million dollars. The Commonwealth will likely keep 1/2 of this with the rest being divided among counties.

Kentucky's Opioid Abatement Advisory Commission is tasked with overseeing the state's allotment, which plans to set up an application process so abatement programs can request funding.

I would hope this money will go to fund substance abuse programs, programs for inmates incarcerated in our local jails and address mental health issues of the inmates.

Incarceration is not the solution for mental illness. There is a revolving door for many of the inmates. It appears most everyone that is arrested is in possession of Methamphetamine. Yet, I see no substance abuse programs provided. There is a man that is currently incarcerated, "a frequent flyer" that says he buys $3.50 of Meth daily just so he can focus enough to read the Bible. I suspect he has a diagnosis of ADHD undiagnosed and untreated.

I was speaking with a prior Taylor County jailer recently. He started a conversation with me, just a friendly conversation. He then volunteered information as to who he was, the length of time as jailer and the numerous programs he established while in office. This man explained to me the difference it made in the county, less substance abuse and the appreciation expressed by the inmates. He said not everyone would participate and not everyone benefited from the programs provided, but if one person was helped to overcome addiction, then he had accomplished a huge task. I left the conversation filled with ideas of the goodness still left in peoples heart. He was genuinely proud of the success of his programs.

Based on CDC's National Center for Health Statistics release November 17, 2021, there have been over 100,000 drug overdose deaths annually ending in April 2021. That is an increase of 28.5%from the 78,056 the previous year. Overdose deaths from synthetic opioids such as Fentanyl and Methamphetamine also showed a huge increase over the same year. These are staggering statistics. Substance abuse knows no barriers such as money, status in the community, age or gender. People that think their loved one would NEVER develop an addiction should certainly look around and observe what is happening.

I know people have to help themselves before anyone else can help them. I know any program that is initiated is not going to benefit everyone, but it may help one!

This story was posted on 2022-05-17 10:23:34
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