UNM forum to tackle opioid addiction issues - Albuquerque Journal

UNM forum to tackle opioid addiction issues

The nation’s top anti-drug official, along with local law enforcement personnel and addiction experts, will meet with the public Thursday to discuss possible solutions to opioid addiction problems in New Mexico and throughout the country.

Michael Botticelli, the director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy, will hold a community forum Thursday at the University of New Mexico’s Domenici Center for Health Sciences Education.

His visit is part of a national plan to target opioid addiction.

Opioids – drugs that include heroin and prescription oxycodone, hydrocodone and fentanyl – are highly effective painkillers, but they also are highly addictive, linked to increase crime and a transition to heroin.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that heroin-related overdoses nearly doubled between 2011 and 2013, but have started to drop.

President Barack Obama in October asked the Office of National Drug Control Policy to target opioid addiction. The office began a professional training program for proscribers of opioids, and it began plans to increase access to treatment.

Botticelli said on Tuesday that he plans during the community forum on Thursday to address the need to fully fund treatment facilities and increase the number of facilities in New Mexico.

“We know right now we have a big gap in the number of people seeking treatment and the number of people who get it,” Botticelli said during a conference call with Rep. Ben Ray Luján, D-N.M.

Joining him with be Richard Gallegos, chief of the Española Police Department (who oversees an area with one of the highest heroin overdose rates in the nation); Dr. Leslie Hayes, with El Centro Family Health; Joshua Trujillo, a recovery advocate; and Jennifer Weiss-Burke, a parent advocate.

Rep. Michelle Luján Grisham, D-N.M., along with Damon Martinez, U.S. Attorney for the District of New Mexico, and Wayne Lindstrom, director of Behavioral Health Services Division for the state, will launch the forum with presentations.

Martinez was on a Journal -sponsored panel addressing opioid addiction in June.

Home » News » Albuquerque News » UNM forum to tackle opioid addiction issues


Albuquerque Journal and its reporters are committed to telling the stories of our community.

• Do you have a question you want someone to try to answer for you? Do you have a bright spot you want to share?
   We want to hear from you. Please email yourstory@abqjournal.com

taboola desktop

1
Court records: Murder suspect works for DEA
ABQnews Seeker
Man charged in shooting death was ... Man charged in shooting death was confidential informant for federal agency
2
NM abortion clinic fields calls from Texas; schedules 'about ...
ABQnews Seeker
New spotlight makes them wary of ... New spotlight makes them wary of the longevity of the state's new role as a haven for abortion care
3
Court records show murder suspect worked for DEA
ABQnews Seeker
Man charged in shooting death was ... Man charged in shooting death was confidential informant for federal agency
4
City sponsors Friday nights for teens
ABQnews Seeker
Each event is geared for kids ... Each event is geared for kids age 12 to 19
5
APD seeks help identifying teen girls killed
ABQnews Seeker
Two young women die in suspicious ... Two young women die in suspicious crash near Central and Tingley
6
California man sentenced to 11½ years
ABQnews Seeker
Fatal shooting occurred after night of ... Fatal shooting occurred after night of drinking
7
Floods prompt evacuation warning near burn scar
ABQnews Seeker
Deluge hits areas near previous Calf ... Deluge hits areas near previous Calf Canyon/Hermits Peak Fire path
8
County appoints interim MDC chief
ABQnews Seeker
Otero Gonzales has 25 years' experience ... Otero Gonzales has 25 years' experience in the corrections field
9
Governor asks Biden to help protect women
ABQnews Seeker
Lujan Grisham said New Mexico would ... Lujan Grisham said New Mexico would be a 'brick wall' against attempts to restrict abortion access