Create Drug Education Materials

Education is key in helping to prevent the misuse of opioids. Educational kits are easily distributed throughout the community by partnering up with local community businesses and organizations. Some examples of items that can be included: pamphlets, informational brochures, magnets, bracelets, toys, pens/pencils etc. These items are anything that will draw attention to the educational information being provided. Alternatively, you can partner with a local pharmacy or other wellness-related business to display the kits at the checkout counter for customers.
How do I do that?1. Gather printed materials to include in each kit.2. Purchase giveaway items with drug education message (magnets, pens, bracelets, etc.)3. Package printed materials and giveaway items in small bag or box to be easily handed out to members of the public.4. Coordinate with local businesses to hand out kits to customers as they enter and leave the store.5. Alternatively, partner with a local pharmacy or other wellness-related business to display the kits at the checkout counter for customers to take while making purchase.

Use Online Continuing Education Courses for Prescribing Opioids

Health professionals can change the way they treat pain and reduce the chance that patients will become addicted to prescription medications. This can prove quite challenging for providers who must attempt to minimize misuse without impeding a patient’s access to medical care. Online training courses can help! Universities, medical associations, and other organizations are making it easier for medical practitioners to expand their knowledge about the opioid crisis, pain management, prescribing methods, and the science of addiction. Some online resources are free while others may have a cost associated. Continuing education credits (CMEs) can be offered through some of these courses.
How can I do that?Contact or do a web search of universities or medical associations to see what resources may be available regarding continuing education courses, or check out some of these organizations to help you get started.
Center for Disease ControlTennessee Medical Association

Add Information to School’s Website on Opioids

Schools should be a safe place for students to learn and grow. Parents and educators can team up to protect students from opioid addiction. Schools can add a section to their websites with information on opioids. The information is not intended to frighten parents or their children, but to make them aware and well informed on the issue. Schools can get as specific as having addiction recovery resources listed, posting a picture of their student resource officer(s), information or instructions on confidential reporting, reminders to pick up medications at the end of the school year, and information on sports injuries and opioids, or be as generic as listing links to resources and writing a summary of the school’s policy on substance abuse.
The Fargo Public School System in Fargo, North Dakota addresses the opioid epidemic on one of their student resource officer pages. They address the issue head on by explaining that opioids can be legal (prescription) or illegal (heroin), expressing how highly addictive the drugs are and giving links for the state of North Dakota’s prevention website and the Center for Disease Control’s website on fentanyl. Fargo Public Schools goes on to say that they will “continue preventive measures” and lets students and staff know who to contact at school when reporting substance abuse.
How can I do that?Contact your local schools or school board to find out if they would be willing to post information to their website(s). Many schools are responsible for their own content, but would need time to consider and vote on the topic before changing their website.