heroin

Vince Winkel

North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein was in Wilmington Monday to discuss the opioid epidemic with the area’s state and local elected officials, law enforcement, and health care providers. There is a bipartisan effort in the works to bring a pilot project to Wilmington to treat opiate overdoses. House Bill 324 would create a quick-response team that would respond to overdoses with additional emergency support.

WHQR/gg

Ken Vest retired from television news; he retired to Wilmington with his family in 2015. He studied Drama and English Literature at Texas State University, and he's a writer and actor. When tragedy struck his family 5 years ago, Ken turned to theatre as one way to move through grief - and to help others. In October, he successfully raised enough funds to produce the play he wrote: Inside Job.

Wikimedia Commons

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.

New Hanover County Sheriff's Office

Heroin busts have been in the headlines for the past month. Most notably, the New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office carried out the second largest heroin bust in the county’s history at the end of October. While busts like these address the supply of drugs, what is being done to reduce demand? The New Hanover County Drug Treatment Court focuses on permanently changing the behavior of addicts.