Last week we launched the Public Health Excellence in Law Enforcement program. This program was created to recognize the efforts of Arizona’s law enforcement agencies that work with their local EMS agency partners to train staff to recognize opioid overdose in the field, administer naloxone when necessary, and submit information to the Department of Health Services through the ambulance medical record.
This program supports the statewide initiative to reduce the amount of opioid overdose deaths. The Kingman Police Department was first law enforcement agency to earn this recognition for its efforts in developing and implementing an opioid overdose recognition and treatment program in its community.
Working with our partners on deaths due to prescription painkillers is a top priority of ADHS. We have taken several steps to address the issue, and we are continuing to develop new prevention and education strategies. The Arizona Opioid Prescribing Guidelines were released in 2014. The guidelines were a set of best practices for prescribing opioids using the expertise of practitioners from across Arizona. This past year we launched our Substance Abuse Data portal, which provides invaluable data, reports, and additional resources related to substance abuse. We also provide a comprehensive list of prescription drug drop boxes at DumpTheDrugsAZ.org for folks to take their unused or expired medication.