Lafayette’s Opioid Crisis: What are we doing about it?

LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) – The Knowledge Effect of Lafayette Parish is hosting “Lafayette’s Opioid Crisis:  What are we doing about it?”

“We are a community agency made up of community members who have a stake in substance abuse awareness and prevention,” says Doug MacDiarmid of The Knowledge Effect.  Panelists include Dr. Charles Burnell of Acadian Ambulance, members of the Metro Narcotics Task Force, emergency room doctors and local pharmacists.

MacDiarmid says the numbers show that in Louisiana there are 108 pain medication prescriptions for every 100 people in the state. “That means one prescription pain medication for every man, women, and child in the State of Louisiana. That goes to show that there’s no way that every person here in the state is prescribed pain medications, but there’s many being prescribed out there,” says MacDiarmid.

“You can crush it.  You can snort it and inject it,” says iCare Community Pharmacy Pharmacist Beverly Egle.

The iCare Community Pharmacy has 50 years of experience on staff.  They’re one of the panelists at opioid crisis meeting.  “We have a major problem here in Lafayette.  Yes, we do.  Lafayette is no different than any other large city,” says Egle.

The number of people who have died from prescription opioids more than quadrupled over since 1999, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).  “You go up the ladder, starting at the bottom.  You go up and then you got an addiction,” explains Egle.

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