DOVER, DE (Oct. 6, 2022) – The Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH) has created new resources and a new webinar specifically for pharmacists as part of its ongoing work to reduce substance use disorder. DPH has worked with partners in the medical community to develop Delaware-specific, evidence-based education materials, aiming to reduce the risk of unintentional opioid prescription overdose deaths in the state. These materials are available on the health care provider page at HelpIsHereDE.com, including the new content created specifically for pharmacists.
According to the 2019 Annual Surveillance Report on Drug-Related Outcomes from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Delaware ranked first in the nation for both high-dose opioid prescribing and long-acting opioid prescribing. In 2020, Delaware ranked third-highest among all states in overdose death rates (CDC, 2021). Of those overdose deaths, 88% involved opioids.
DPH partnered with Alosa Health, Inc., to provide one-on-one education for pharmacists. DPH and Alosa created a webinar (available on HelpIsHere.com) to educate pharmacists on the effects of co-prescribing naloxone (Narcan) with certain opioid prescriptions. Pharmacists who complete the webinar curriculum will be eligible to apply for Continuing Education credits (CEs). Among other topics covered in the webinar, pharmacists are encouraged to co-dispense naloxone with any opioid prescription exceeding 50 Morphine Milligram Equivalents (MME) or upon discretion as outlined in the Centers for Disease Control and Prescription’s Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain.
Pharmacies can participate in the Community-Based Naloxone Access Program (CBNAP) to deliver naloxone without a doctor’s prescription under a Standing Order. Naloxone is an opioid receptor antagonist used to reverse opioid overdose and opioid-induced respiratory depression, which can prevent death and brain damage from lack of oxygen. Naloxone is covered in full through Delaware Medicaid insurance.
If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction in Delaware, call the DHSS 24/7 Crisis Hotline to be connected to treatment and recovery options. In New Castle County, call 1-800-652-2929. Or in Kent and Sussex counties, call 1-800-345-6785.
For free 24/7 counseling, coaching, and support, as well as links to mental health, addiction, and crisis services call the Delaware Hope Line at 1-833-9-HOPEDE. To search for treatment and recovery services in Delaware or nearby states, visit HelpIsHereDE.com.
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The Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH), a division of the Delaware Department of Health and Social Services, is a nationally accredited public health agency recognized by the Public Health Accreditation Board for its outstanding dedication to driving change through innovation. DPH is committed to improving the quality of the lives of Delaware’s citizens by promoting health and well-being, fostering self-sufficiency, and protecting vulnerable populations.
Anyone who is deaf, hard of hearing, Deaf-Blind, or speech-disabled can contact DPH by first dialing 711 using specialized devices (i.e., TTY, TeleBraille, voice devices). The 711 service is free; to learn more about how it works, visit delawarerelay.com.