Why is prescription drug abuse such a concern?
Prescription drug abuse/misuse (PDA/M), in particular the abuse of prescription opioid (PO)medications, has reached epidemic proportions in the United States (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2011).
Why should we be concerned in Tennessee?
The state of Tennessee is disproportionately struggling with the prescription drug abuse epidemic. Tennessee has the second highest opioid prescribing rateper capita (Paulozzi LJ, Mack KA, & Hockenberry JM, 2014) and has experienced a 250% increase in opioid-related overdose deaths from 2001 to 2010, accounting for 7% of prescription drug overdose deaths nationally despite comprising only 2.3% of the nations population (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2011;Tennessee Department of Health Safety Subcabinet Working Group, 2012).
What is NAS?
Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS), a condition resulting from intrauterine exposure to maternal prescription drugs has also reached epidemic proportions in our area (cite NAS surveillance system). With a rate of 41.6 per 1,000 live births, the Northeast Region of Tennessee accounts for a disproportionate percentage of babies born with NAS statewide (Tennessee Department of Health Division of Family and Wellness, 2013).
How can I get involved?
ETSU PDAM Working Group Meeting