Posts Tagged ‘opioids’

More About MATTERS: Webinar & Panel Discussion

Monday, August 22nd, 2022

September 7, 1-2pm – New York MATTERS is a statewide referral network that has connected over 1,000 individuals to essential medications for opioid use disorder and additional support services. They have developed an electronic referral platform (hosted by the New York State Department of Health) to efficiently refer patients with opioid use disorder from emergency departments along with OB/GYN offices, correctional facilities, inpatient units, pre-hospital settings, etc. to community-based clinics. The app is now available in the Apple and Google Play stores, helping to connect patients, providers, first responders, and community organizations.


Panelists include:
Caleigh Loughran, NYSDOH Program Manager
Matthew Fallico, MSW, NYSDOH Program Coordinator
Sarah Santos, Hudson Valley Regional Care Coordinator with HVCS
Emily Payne, MSPH, NYSDOH Epidemiologist & Data Evaluator

Join and learn more about this program. The panel will briefly describe its roots and reasons for its
success and growth beyond borders and beyond its technical platform. We will explore the data-driven
lessons learned from the growth of the program, the role of community partners and regional care
coordinators, and how it all dovetails with SEPs and Health Hubs. We are hosting this webinar as a meeting format to encourage dialogue and collaboration throughout. This webinar is free to attend.
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.
REGISTER TODAY!

New Program: Regional Care Coordinator Connects Opioid Survivors to Resources

Tuesday, February 8th, 2022
Sarah Santos, Regional Care Coordinator for Dutchess County
Sarah Santos is the Regional Care Coordinator for Dutchess County.

HVCS joined a new statewide effort to link people who have survived an opioid overdose with local recovery, treatment and support resources. Coordinated by NY MATTERS, our Regional Care Coordinator is based in Dutchess County but is empowered to serve clients throughout the Hudson Valley region.
The Regional Care Coordinator works with treatment centers, medical providers, emergency rooms, syringe access programs, medically-assisted treatment providers, and other services to compile a comprehensive list of available referrals. Contact information and data are loaded onto an iPad search portal that is available in emergency rooms. After a non-fatal overdose, medical staff will provide the iPad to clients so they can line up support services immediately, before leaving the emergency room. The program’s purpose is to increase the number of successful referrals to aftercare resources, without lengthy delays or lag times. Studies have shown that overdose clients are much more likely to pursue treatment the sooner they connect with the provider and the “warm handoff” happens in a timely manner. If a client experiences any obstacles, such as a wait list or lack of response from a provider, they are less likely to follow through on the treatment referral. By delaying treatment, the client is much more likely to continue using substances illegally and, possibly, risks another overdose.


HVCS’ Regional Care Coordinator is part of a growing interconnected web of substance use disorder providers. Their role is to pave the way for immediate referral uptake among providers, to funnel more people to the treatment they need to free themselves or reduce the harm of substance use. Our RCC is also an integral part of our Drug User Health Hub in Dutchess County. The Health Hub links clients to buprenorphine (Suboxone) prescribing providers, either in person or via telemedicine. Buprenorphine prevents the feelings of opioid withdrawal without the “high” or harm. It is often a critical component of a client’s recovery from opioid use disorder.

To reach our Regional Care Coordinator:

  • Call or text: (914) 308-3288
  • Email: ssantos@hudsonvalleycs.org

Health Hub Expands To Dutchess County

Monday, November 15th, 2021

Thanks to a grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), HVCS is now able to expand its Health Hub services to Dutchess County. The grant is administered by the New York State Department of Health AIDS Institute.

The Health Hub works with clients who have an opioid use disorder and provides them with prescriptions for buprenorphine, also known as Suboxone. This medication prevents the feelings of withdrawal without causing a “high.” People who are on Buprenorphine are able to avoid withdrawal, reduce their chances of relapse, and engage in healthier decisions. Clients access a medical professional on a regular basis: in this case, clients will meet with a provider from Cornerstone Family Healthcare via telehealth visits.

The regular contact required by the Buprenorphine prescription also allows staff to gain the client’s trust, address other livestyle issues such as food access, housing, HIV and STI testing, and refer them to any other necessary services.

The Health Hub has operated in Orange and Sullivan counties for many years. We are grateful to be the recipient of these funds so that we can expand a successful program with a proven track record of reducing the harm of opioids on another county in the Hudson Valley.

New Video: Fentanyl Test Strips

Friday, March 26th, 2021

How much do you know about fentanyl test strips? Why, and how, should you use them? When funding allows, we provide these for free to our clients. Be smarter and safer, test first!

Advocate With Gov Cuomo for Harm Reduction Services

Thursday, October 22nd, 2020

Overdose, Hepatitis C, and HIV rates are climbing in New York State.
Do you have one minute to advocate for harm reduction services for people who use drugs?

Call the Governor and advocate!

Governor Cuomo’s Office: 518-474-8390

Use this handy phone script:

“Hello,
My name is _____________ and I’m calling from (part of the state you’re calling from) to talk to Gov. Cuomo about the overdose crisis and COVID-19. The current pandemic has worsened the overdose crisis, putting people who use drugs at risk across our state. The programs that provide services to them are losing. People are being arrested for carrying syringes and lifesaving medication like buprenorphine. New York law that criminalizes syringe possession and buprenorphine goes against public health, and can cause sharing or reusing of syringes. This will lead to increases in HIV and Hepatitis C infection.

Due to the Department of Health’s syringe shortage and fiscal issues, we are in a more urgent situation than ever before. Syringe service programs across the state do not have needed supplies, meaning people are carrying equipment longer, putting them at risk of arrest. Not only will decriminalizing syringes reduce unnecessary arrests, it will also reduce the amount of syringes that get unsafely discarded in our communities. Lifting Expanded Syringe Access Program (ESAP) limits at pharmacies will ensure people have access to what they need.

Governor Cuomo can and must act now. We need him to decriminalize syringes and buprenorphine, lift ESAP limits at pharmacies, and stop withholding harm reduction funds. *Optional: add in related personal experience*
Thank you for your time.”

International Overdose Awareness Day – Video

Thursday, October 1st, 2020

On August 21, 2020, HVCS observed International Overdose Awareness Day with a Facebook Live event. Personal experience speakers, community service providers, and HVCS staff all recorded videos for the occasion. We wrapped things up with a Narcan training. This event was sponsored by PCSB.

HVCS & St. Lukes Cornwall Hospital Connect Overdose Patients To Long-Term Aftercare Help

Friday, February 22nd, 2019

St. Lukes Cornwall Hospital in NewburghWhen someone comes to a standard emergency room because of an opioid overdose, the staff do everything they can to revive them–but what happens after that? At St. Luke’s Cornwall Hospital (SLCH) in Newburgh, they provide overdose patients with a short-term prescription for buprenorphine, a pharmaceutical which prevents withdrawl symptoms without providing a high. This short course of buprenorphine is known as induction and it’s the first step in assisting the client to discontinue or markedly diminish their use of other opioids. SLCH can only offer the induction phase, not a longer-term prescription program, though.

That’s where our Health Hub comes in. We recently began a collaboration with SLCH in which we transition clients from the induction phase to long-term bupe use (known as a Medication Assisted Treatment Program or MAT).

Hospital staff and clients appreciate that HVCS’ services are low-threshold. Clients who come to the Health Hub are able to receive Buprenorphine treatment with out the fear of being discharged because they either relapse or are using another substance. We expect for this collaboration to be very successful and are looking forward to work closely with other hospitals as they begin to look at the same model as St Luke’s Cornwall Hospital.

Naloxone Co-Payment Assistance Program Available from NYS

Tuesday, June 12th, 2018

As a result of the opioid epidemic, the Surgeon General issued an advisory to emphasize the importance of expanding the awareness and availability of naloxone. Opioid overdose deaths have been on a steady incline in New York State (NYS) and have increased by 180% from 2010 to 2016.1 Knowing how to use naloxone and keeping it within reach can save a life.

Within NYS there are over 2,100 pharmacies that can dispense naloxone with a standing order. Additionally, NYS has implemented the Naloxone Co-Payment Assistance Program, (N-CAP). N-CAP provides co-payment and cost-sharing assistance to people with prescription coverage as part of their health plan to cover co-payments and cost-sharing for naloxone up to $40, providing lower or no out of pocket costs.

Key elements of accessing naloxone at pharmacies include:

  • Individuals can get naloxone at a pharmacy with a standing order and do not need a prescription. They ask for naloxone at the pharmacy counter and present their insurance information and an N-CAP palm card.
  • Individuals are not required to enroll in N-CAP.
  • Individuals who cannot access naloxone through a pharmacy can access naloxone through registered opioid overdose prevention programs, including individuals using naloxone in the line of duty and people who are uninsured. For a directory of Opioid Overdose Prevention Programs, please click here.
  • Pharmacies eligible for co-payment reimbursement for naloxone must participate in the NYS AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP).
  • N-CAP promotional materials are available to order; we encourage you to display these and share them with your clients.

We play an important role in addressing this public health crisis. I am asking for your support to save lives from fatal opioid overdoses by encouraging people to carry naloxone. Thank you for the work you do to maintain the health of all New Yorkers.

If a pharmacy you work with is interested in a standing order, or have other questions, please contact: naloxonepharmacy@health.ny.gov.

New Sullivan Co Helpline Ad Features HVCS Employee Frank Barone

Monday, May 21st, 2018

Frank BaroneFrank Barone, HVCS’ Syringe Exchange Program Prevention Specialist, recently recorded a public service ad for the Sullivan County Helpline. In less than a minute, you’ll get a sense of Frank’s past and why he’s so passionate about his work here at HVCS.

Frank has been a panelist and speaker at several recent conferences and town halls about the opioid epidemic, with more speaking engagements to come.

Thanks to the Sullivan County Health Department for sharing this with us, and for partnering with HVCS to reach more people with addiction disorders in Sullivan County.

Narcan-Resistant Fentanyl Making Its Way Closer to Hudson Valley

Tuesday, March 6th, 2018

This is a bit of old news, but it’s being circulated again in the substance abuse treatment field to make sure users are fully aware of the risks, and so that Narcan carriers know that they may be up against a powerful new drug.

According to Narconon Suncoast:

In Pittsburgh, PA a type of Narcan-resistant Fentanyl has been found in batches of heroin and it’s already causing numerous overdoses and deaths. Apparently, it’s hundreds of times more powerful than morphine and called Acryl-Fentanyl.”

“Acryl-Fentanyl is synthesized, which means it’s artificially created and has no natural origin (remember, heroin’s natural origin is a poppy plant). Not only is it manmade, but it’s being created in China, like most other research chemicals and synthetic drugs and being smuggled into the United States.

DEA Special Agent In-Charge, David Battiste said, “If Acryl-fentanyl is introduced into the population, it can have devastating effects. You would have to reuse Narcan if you are revived from Narcan at all.”

That’s right folks, this stuff is completely resistant to Narcan. Like Special Agent Battiste said, it’s unlikely that Narcan will reverse its effects and, if it does, it will take multiple, multiple doses. We’re already having enough of a problem with the strength of opiates these days. Narcan is struggling to keep up and continue to save the lives of those who overdose. Acryl-Fentanyl is going to make this problem a whole lot worse and this is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the devastating effects this drug is going to have on our society.”

Read the full article here.