Overdose Awareness Day to Feature Overdose Prevention Training
Expanded event features training, free naloxone kits and a vigil to honor those lost to overdose
Overdose Awareness Day 2019 is a day to remember those gone too soon from overdose deaths. An August 31 event held in Vancouver marks the third year local organizer Lyn Anderson has brought the community together for a candlelight vigil to honor all who’ve lost their lives to an overdose.
This year, the event is expanding to include training with the opioid overdose prevention medication, Naloxone. Community-level Naloxone training is an effective way to save lives and respond to the opioid epidemic. The training is offered through collaboration between Clark County Public Health, the Clark County Opioid Taskforce and Southwest Washington Accountable Community of Health (SWACH). A limited supply of free Naloxone kits will also be available at the event.
Capacity for the training is limited to 100. Participants are asked to RSVP in advance. However, RSVP is not required for the candlelight vigil.
“The opioid epidemic is personal for me because I lost my 18-year-old son Ryan Furness August 19, 2012 in Vancouver from a heroin overdose,” said organizer Lyn Anderson. “Since 2012, overdose related deaths in our country have nearly doubled. My hope is that with awareness, naloxone and more treatment options for substance use disorders, others may survive and find recovery.”
Overdose impacts everyone. That’s why this event is open to all – whether you’ve lost a friend or loved one, work in spaces like healthcare or recovery, or want to learn more and be prepared to save a life. And although a portion of this year’s event will focus on opiates, which are associated with 68% of all overdose related deaths, organizers point out that alcohol and other drugs make up nearly 30,000 more lives lost each year, for a total of 70,237.
“SWACH and the Clark County Opioid Taskforce are pleased to support and expand on Lyn Anderson’s efforts around Opioid Awareness Day in this community,” said Jim Jensen, Opioid Collaborative Manager at SWACH. “This event is an important way to both honor those we’ve lost and act to prevent future overdoses in Southwest Washington Communities.”
Additional event supporters include Clark County Department of Community Services.
The opioid epidemic is the worst man-made epidemic in human history. Over 47,000 people died from opioid overdose in 2017 alone and the trend has been climbing steadily for 20 years. Opioid overdose has passed car accidents and is now the fourth leading cause of death in the U.S. The impact of opioid use disorder and opioid misuse reaches across sectors and has an impact on diverse systems and millions of people.
WHEN: August 31, from 4-8pm
— 4-6pm Overdose prevention training provided by Clark County Public Health
— 6-8pm Third annual Southwest Washington Overdose Awareness Day candlelight vigil
WHERE: Marshall Center
1009 E McLoughlin Blvd
Vancouver, WA 98663
— RSVP: RSVP for the training: https://sw_wa_opioid_awareness_day_2019.eventbrite.com
— The candlelight vigil does not require an RSVP