Opioid Addiction

Lori Claffee is a member of the Union/Park Neighborhood Association which has been working to take back a neighborhood in Springfield. She is standing in front of a demolition site where a nuisance house was torn down.
Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

Neighborhood activists, who are trying to clean up one of Springfield's toughest neighborhoods, say they'll only be able to tackle the problem one building at a time.

Kay Curtis sets up the new childcare center at the Brattleboro Retreat which is for the children of opioid adicts who are receiving their treatment.
Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

There were 11 overdoses in Brattleboro over the Fourth of July weekend, and as eye-popping as that number is, officials who are dealing with the opioid crisis every day say they weren't surprised.

At a news conference announcing Aspenti Health's new name, Gov. Phil Scott praised company officials for saving the company's 140 jobs, and for their continued work in drug prevention and treatment.
Taylor Dobbs / VPR

The company formerly known as Burlington Labs has a new name: Aspenti Health.

mark wragg / Thinkstock

As the country and the state struggle with the opiate crisis, Vermont is taking action by zeroing in on one way that people can initially get hooked: narcotics that are legitimately prescribed by physicians for pain.

Fuse / Thinkstock

The continuing opioid crisis across the nation is prompting calls for action and change. In Vermont, new rules outlining how doctors prescribe opioids to patients in need of pain relief are set to take effect on July 1.

Nashua’s Health Department wants you to stop using the word “addict.”

“We need to talk about substance use disorder like the disease that it is,” health educator Aly McKnight told a captive audience of thirty or so in the basement of Nashua Public Library last month.  She pointed to a list of “stigmatizing” words projected onto a screen. “Alcoholic,” “junkie,” even “addiction” should be avoided, it said. 

Ric Cengeri / VPR

It was a blow to those dealing with the opiate abuse crisis when Maple Leaf Treatment Center in Underhill announced that it was closing temporarily in January. But the announcement in February that it was closing permanently and filing for bankruptcy was seismic.

Emotional abuse during childhood is linked to misuse of opioids in adulthood, according to a recent University of Vermont study.

In less than eight hours last June, Yale New Haven’s emergency department treated 12 patients who had overdosed on opioids. Three died; nine were saved.

People suffering from opioid addiction generally face a lot of challenges as they begin their recovery. But in the Upper Valley, one business owner is using economic incentives to help people stay motivated in recovery programs.

Taylor Dobbs / VPR

Officials in Burlington announced new measures Thursday that are part of the city’s efforts to gather data that will help inform their work to fight opiate addiction and the problems it brings to the community.

A record number of Vermonters died last year from opioid overdoses.

VikaValter / iStock

It was such a major concern in 2014 that then-Governor Peter Shumlin devoted his entire State of the State address to the opiate addiction crisis. As a result, the state focused health department, treatment, and law enforcement resources at this growing problem.

zilli / iStock

Vermont has already invested significant time and money in combating the opioid addiction, from special drug courts to laws regulating prescription monitoring. Now the state is considering a new tool in its arsenal: acupuncture. 

The number of deaths from heroin and synthetic opioids continues to rise in New England, according to data just released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Courtesy / Burlington Police

Police arrested one man and are still investigating after a string of four robberies in Burlington over the weekend.

The Springfield Police Department and the U.S. Attorney's office convened a meeting in Springfield Tuesday to try to get landlords to play a greater role in fighting the opioid epidemic.

The federal government will offer waivers to nurse practitioners and physicians assistants to write prescriptions for drugs that curb addiction to opioids.

Peter Hirschfeld / VPR

In 2012, Vermont had 650 people in some form of treatment for opiate addiction. Today, according to Vermont Department of Health, that number has ballooned to more than 7,500. But the state still lacks the capacity needed to treat all of the addicts seeking help.

Taylor Dobbs / VPR

Officials in Burlington announced a new program Thursday with the goal of ending the opiate crisis in the city.

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