Seems a certain something's stirring in the Mississippi opioid crisis. That certain something?
Politics. Politics. And more politics.
Wolfe cites “a bill that just passed the Senate to create a state Opioid Crisis Commission.” The problem is Governor Phil Bryant's own ‘Opioid and Heroin Study Task Force had already convened. Last year, in fact. Furthermore, its findings came replete with 41 recommendations. That was in August '17.
The response from Bryant’s office was both swift and unequivocal.
"The Governor's Opioid and Heroin Task Force has already made recommendations to address this critical issue. Regulatory boards charged with implementing these recommendations are close to finalizing many of them. That work should not be interrupted. The longer these proposals remain unimplemented, the more Mississippians will die. Gov. Bryant questions the need for an additional commission. [He] was not consulted before enabling legislation was filed, and would adamantly oppose any effort to impede the progress already made in fighting this scourge.”
With “Mississippi on track to break the record of opioid-related deaths again this year,” we wholeheartedly agree. Addiction treatment is what’s needed, not further study. And certainly not more politics. Until that starts happening, opioid-related deaths will only increase.
Mississippi Opioid Crisis Update
Mississippi remains the fifth-highest opioid prescribing state per capita in the country. So says Stand Up, Mississippi anyway. And Stand Up, Mississippi should know, since the statewide initiative is on the frontlines in the battle against opioid addiction. The crisis is particular acute in the Delta. In fact, seven of 18 Delta counties had more opioid prescriptions written than people.
"A decade ago maybe one in ten clients came in with opioid problem," said one addiction treatment provider. "Now that number is about 60%."
All the more reason to call for increased addiction treatment. Sure, Narcan is now making its way around the Delta. And yes, the overdose antidote is saving lives. (Thanks largely to Stand Up, Mississippi.) But it takes a whole lot more than a jolt of Narcan to restore a life to living. It takes time. It takes effort. And it takes treatment.
(If you or a loved one are seeking addiction treatment for opioids or any other kind of drugs or alcohol, give us a call. We'll see you get the help you need.)