Progress is being made as opioid prescriptions in Sacramento County are decreasing, but more work needs to be done to prevent opioid overdose emergency department visits and deaths.
Opioids can have a number of serious side effects even when used appropriately; when used for non-medical purposes, opioids can become highly addictive.
To provide solutions, Sacramento County is an active participant in the Sacramento County Opioid Coalition
that is comprised of a regional coalition of healthcare professionals, community-based organizations, law enforcement, county agencies and concerned citizens.
The Sacramento County Opioid Coalition goal is to work collaboratively on a comprehensive plan to address the opioid epidemic effectively with the following strategies:
- Promoting safe prescribing
- Expanding treatment access
- Promoting safe medication disposal
- Encouraging early intervention treatment and recovery
- Overdose prevention
- Expanding public education and media outreach
“Opioid misuse and dependency is a complex public health issue that requires a multidimensional community response,” said Dr. Olivia Kasirye, Sacramento County Public Health Officer. “Through the Sacramento County Opioid Coalition, we’re bringing together local organizations and citizens committed to saving lives through collaboration and action. We’re engaging the medical community, providing law enforcement with life-saving tools, promoting safe medication disposal, and working to raise awareness about opioids in our community.”
Sacramento County, in 2016, had 241 opioid overdose emergency department visits and 55 opioid overdose deaths
. The numbers trended down in 2017 and in that year, Sacramento County received a State grant of naloxone nasal inhaler kits that were distributed to law enforcement agencies and community-based organizations. The drug naloxone reverses an opioid overdose and is vital for saving lives. A goal of the Sacramento County Opioid Coalition is to increase naloxone availability in our community through distribution to law enforcement agencies, people who use opioids, and to friends or family members of those at risk of an opioid overdose. To date, the Sacramento County Opioid Coalition has over 140 stakeholders and has distributed 1,450 life-saving naloxone kits.
The Sacramento County Opioid Coalition website provides additional information including a list of current stakeholders, upcoming events and a calendar of the group’s progress. To join the Coalition or learn more about their efforts, visit their website