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Sadly, we know the opioid crisis is still getting worse. It has ravaged many hard-hit communities across the country where people are still struggling to find a job and stay sober. Even beyond the devastating loss of life, we have seen hard evidence that the opioid crisis is preventing people from getting jobs and hurting the economy.

The White House analysis found that the U.S. lost more than $500 billion of economic growth in 2015 because of substance use disorders. Additional research, earlier this year, found that employers were struggling to find qualified job applicants who aren’t addicted to opioids. With the CDC’s upcoming tally for 2016, we can expect that picture to get even worse.

Stress around the holidays can be so overwhelming to addicts in recovery when you consider everything the mind and body are going through. However there are ways to minimize the stress by taking action before and even during any holiday event. Here is a list!
GET STARTED ON THESE ITEMS RIGHT AWAY BEFORE THE HOLIDAYS
Exercise
I cannot impress upon you how important exercise is to your physical and emotional health...

Surgeons prescribing fewer opioids to battle epidemic

December 8, 2017

ANN ARBOR, Mich. — A group of surgeons are taking a new approach with their patients by prescribing fewer opioids to reduce their risk of addiction.

NPR reported that according to research, post-surgical patients are at higher risk of addiction due to the medicine they are prescribed to help with their recovery.

ANNOUNCEMENT

December 2017

        TOPAC is pleased to announce that Linda M. Leyhane has joined the staff filling the role of Executive Director.

          Linda previously served as Executive Director of Crawford House, a residential treatment program for women, for 14 years.  More recently Linda was the Manager of Ambulatory Services at the Rescue Mission of Trenton.

          Linda brings to TOPAC her vast experience in the treatment field and her dedication to recovery for everyone.

The next frontier of drug research may be underwater. President Trump has officially declared the nation's opioid crisis a national public health emergency. He agreed to contribute a portion of his salary to fighting it. Thanks to a nearly $10 million grant from the Department of Defense, researchers from the University of Utah Health are getting in on the efforts. And this multi-disciplinary team of scientists is looking to venomous sea snails to combat the epidemic.

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LANDEN KAISER - Obituary

July 9, 1998 - December 2, 2017

Landen Kaiser a lifelong resident of Hamilton Square, NJ,  passed away suddenly and tragically on Saturday, December 2, 2017. Landen battled with addiction for many years. She was a strong willed young lady who tried to fight addiction,  but ultimately lost the battle as the craving that comes from true addiction was more than she could overcome. If there is someone in your life battling addiction reach out to them. Substance abuse is not something to be ashamed of or hidden. So many lives are lost every day. The stigma of embarrassment and denial must be overcome!

Kean Drug Recovery License Plate Bill Advances

Legislation (A5061) sponsored by Assemblyman Sean T. Kean creating a special support recovery license plate to provide housing assistance funding for people who have completed substance abuse treatment was unanimously approved by the NJ Assembly Transportation Committee.

As opioid crisis worsens, a drug used to reverse overdoses can be difficult to access

A drug used to reverse opioid overdoses has been hailed for saving thousands of lives nationwide, but some municipalities are having trouble accessing it.

Walgreens stocks the drug in pharmacies nationwide and can dispense it over the counter in 46 states.

But in some places, the strain on municipal budgets and a need for an increasing amount of naloxone has made it difficult to keep enough in stock.

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Mayor John Ducey of Brick Township, presented an award for Police Chief James Riccio, directly credited the Blue HART program for helping bring down the totals and said it will likely be expanded throughout New Jersey in the near future. Brick and Manchester began the program together. The Blue HART program, which allows those addicted to opiates to come to the police department without fear of arrest and seek help. To date, the program has drawn 250 participants.

Half of New Jersey’s residents have been touched by opioid addiction, and that familiarity may contribute to a more compassionate approach to drug use and strong support for treatment — even if the treatment center is nearby.

The greatest producer of his generation got hooked on pills and almost lost it all – now he's ready to return to the charts. "I felt like I wasn't committed, I was riding off ego," says Timbaland, 45, looking back.

With the election of Phil Murphy as New Jersey's next governor, legislators and advocates are working to get a bill legalizing marijuana on his desk within his first 100 days. Murphy has said he would legalize weed in NJ, but the bill that lands on his desk could look quite a bit different than the one sitting in committee at the moment. Advocates and legislators agree than some changes are necessary for the bill to pass the Legislature.

Kyle Graves, who is in recovery for opioid addition, flips though family photos in his home in Franklin, Tenn., Tuesday, June 6, 2017. Graves’ troubles began more than a decade ago when he sought relief for degenerative arthritis in his hips, shoulders, feet and back. He was prescribed oxycodone. When he lost his job as a car dealership finance manager, Graves found the pills helped get him through that crisis, too. He was a functioning addict when his sixth child was born, a boy named Joshua Jeremiah who contracted spinal meningitis during childbirth. The infant clung to life for six weeks; his death sent Graves sinking deeper into addiction.

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The pharmaceutical industry was listed as one of the “Contributors to the Current Crisis” in the final report of President Trump’s Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis. The report cites decades of aggressive marketing and industry-sponsored physician “conferences” aimed at expanding opioid use by minimizing the dangers of addiction....