HOUGHTON – Nationwide opioid overdoses have reached record highs. The most recent data shows that nearly 3,000 Michigan residents died due to overdose in the last year. Local officials are looking for ways to prevent addiction and step up drug enforcement. In the Upper Peninsula, UPSET’s teams work with NorthCare Network to educate the public about how opioids affect the community.
We’re able to help deliver their message, when we do our drug education programs. On top of that we are in these homes, and we’re communicating not only with the dealers, but the users. And they’re somewhat victims in all of this, because they’re addicts. And they’re fighting for their survival, through the means of purchasing drugs. – Lt./D. Tim Sholander, Michigan State Police/UPSET
UPSET recognizes that enforcement and harm reduction are tools that need to work together. The Michigan legislature passed the Naloxone Standing Order Law in 2016. Under the law, anyone can get naloxone from any pharmacy – no questions asked. And while naloxone won’t prevent a drug overdose, it can keep someone from dying.
That opportunity for an individual to receive clean syringes, supplies, access to Narcan and from someone that makes that available without question. And empower them to make changes when they’re ready. – Judi Brugman, Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Director, NorthCare Network
Finding a path to recovery is different for each individual. Education about what signs to look for and how to react in an emergency are key parts of a recovering community. Law enforcement and NorthCare Network can provide resources that can reduce the number of overdoses and deaths due to drug use. If you or someone you know is dealing with addiction call NorthCare Network at 1-888-333-8030, to reach a directory of addiction services in the Upper Peninsula.
ABC 10 UP has reached out to a number of pharmacies in Houghton, Baraga, and Ontonagon counties to confirm naloxone is available for pick up. Each pharmacy manager said they are fully stocked, and an individual would only need to ask for the medication. MDHHS official pharmacies map.
Gail Ploe at Western UP Health Dept is the contact for most SUD related activities. Her contact is: (906) 482-7382 x 103.
NorthCare Network Substance Use Disorder Providers
WUPHD Syringe Services
Set up a Education Seminar with UPSET at 906 228 1002, Lt./D. Tim Sholander