In April, a study from Castlight Health reported that Wilmington, North Carolina has the highest rate of opioid abuse in the nation. This study was solely based on the abuse of prescription opioids, such as hydrocodones, oxycodones, morphine, fentanyl and the like, but heroin is the non-prescription player in the mix. New Hanover County has the second highest rate of heroin deaths in the state. Local agencies have come together to address the crisis with the Opioid Summit: Surviving the Epidemic. This Summit is Friday, July 29th at Wilmington City Hall, from 8:00am-4:00pm, with continental breakfast and lunch served. The Summit is free.
Deputy Chief Mitch Cunningham from the Wilmington Police Department joined us in the studio to talk about the problem Wilmington is facing; listen above. Mitchell also talks about a program called LEAD (Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion), a program that worked in Seattle and other cities to treat opioid addiction and overdose. The LEAD program is making its way into North Carolina.