U.S. Attorney releases recommendations and report following Louisville Heroin Response Summit

03/28/2017 02:52 PM

Western District U.S. Attorney John Kuhn, Jr. has released a state-wide report detailing recommendation from the Louisville Heroin and Opioid Response Summit held on Dec. 1, 2016.

“Only two things can defeat us in our battle against this epidemic: a lack of commitment and a failure to collaborate,” Kuhn wrote in the 40 page report released on Tuesday. “A serious and sustained commitment to resolve this crisis will bring us the resources we need, and our collaboration will broaden our impact immeasurably. Together, we can build a healthier community and bring this destructive chapter to an end.”

The report summarizes information from the summit, held at the University of Louisville School of Medicine. The one-day event, hosted by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Kentucky in conjunction with the DEA/360 Strategy Program and the University of Louisville School of Medicine, was attended by more than 300 professionals working to combat heroin and opioid abuse, according to a press release.

The report titled: A Call to Action includes facts and graphs highlighting Kentucky and Jefferson County drug overdose rates, and homicide rates in recent years. The report also includes responses from law enforcement entities about dealing with the opiate problem in the commonwealth.

“A Call to Action urges intensified efforts in the areas of treatment, prevention, and law enforcement,” Kuhn said. “We must improve access to treatment, broaden our support of people in recovery, intensify our drug-use prevention efforts with young people, and build a comprehensive data-sharing system from partnerships between public health and public safety.”

Recommendations include:

• Addiction treatment should be available for all persons seeking treatment.
• Prevention programs built upon evidence-based principles should be offered in all schools.
• Education outreach to the general public concerning opioid risks, addiction, and treatment should be expanded.
• Law enforcement should improve and intensify efforts to eliminate the supply of heroin, fentanyl, opioid analogues and diverted pharmaceuticals.
• All sectors working on and affected by the heroin and opioid problem should collaborate to share data and information even if not mandated to do so.
• Kentucky should establish a comprehensive, centralized drug data collection, analysis and sharing system.
• Recovery support programs and systems should be developed in schools and throughout the community.

Download the full report here: A Call to Action.pdf

Nick Storm

Nick Storm is the Anchor and Managing Editor of Pure Politics available exclusively on Spectrum News. Pure Politics is the only nightly program dedicated to Kentucky politics. Nick covers all of the political heavyweights and his investigative work brings to light issues that might otherwise go unnoticed, like his coverage of the backlog of DNA rape kits waiting to be tested in Kentucky. Nick is also working on a feature length bio documentary Outlaw Poet: A documentary on Ron Whitehead. Pure Politics airs weeknight at 7 and 11:30 on Spectrum News. Follow Nick on Twitter @NStorm_Politics. Nick can be reached at 502-792-1107 or nicholas.storm@charter.com.

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