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The home for VPR's coverage of health and health industry issues affecting the state of Vermont.

The Next Steps In Vermont's Response To The Opioid Crisis

The number of children taken into state custody has increased over the past six years, and lawmakers are struggling to find ways to ensure their wellbeing.
The report from Vermont's Opioid Coordination Council highlights some successes in the state's response to the opioid crisis, but stresses the need to increase prevention and do more for Vermonters in recovery.

Thousands of Vermonters have been treated for opioid addiction, and prescriptions for addictive painkillers are down. Vermont's Opioid Coordination Council says that these are signs of progress, but more still needs to be done to create a "firewall of resilience" to the deadly opioid crisis in Vermont. 

The Vermont Opioid Coordination Council's January report outlines a number of recommendations for what the council calls Vermont's "critical" next steps in addressing opioids. With a growing number of lives lost to these drugs, and more than half the children in state custody linked to opioid abuse, the council recommends expanding existing treatment and education initiatives while also improving support for those in recovery.

Vermont's Drug Prevention Policy director Jolinda LeClair and state Health Commissioner Dr. Mark Levine join Vermont Edition to discuss the council's report, what's worked in the state so far and what more needs to be done in Vermont's response to the opioid crisis.

Broadcast live on Monday, Feb. 5, 2018 at noon; rebroadcast at 7 p.m.

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