Last night, the Springfield city council voted to accept a $111,650 grant from the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO) on behalf of Springfield-Greene County Health. The Reducing Overdose through Community Approaches Mentorship (ROCA) grant will support prevention strategies and activities to address the high rate of substance use and overdose deaths in Greene County.
According to the 2022 Community Health Needs Assessment, more than 4% of the Springfield Community (Greene, Christian and Webster counties) has a substance use disorder, a rate higher than the rates for Missouri and the United States, at 3.3% and 3.5% respectively. Unfortunately, this translates to an overdose mortality rate that is also higher than the rest of state and nation, at more than 27 deaths per 100,000 residents in the Springfield Community.
Today is also National Fentanyl Awareness Day, so it is important to recognize that many of the drug overdose deaths impacting our community and others around the country are a result of synthetic opioids like fentanyl. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, opioids were involved in nearly 75% of drug overdose deaths in 2020 and a majority of those involved a synthetic opioid, primarily fentanyl. Fentanyl is 50 to 100 times more potent than drugs like morphine. It is highly addictive and just a very small amount can cause overdose and death.
The ROCA grant will help the Health Department study and better understand how this crisis impacts our community and the steps that can be taken to address it. Funds will also be used to help create an Overdose Fatality Review Board (OFRB).
The OFRB will allow public health, health care, public safety and other community agencies to gather data and understand the underlying causes of drug use in order to help our community prevent overdoses and deaths. The OFRB model has been successful in other communities, and the Health Department plans to model that success here in Greene County.
Media may contact the Health Department PIO Team by call or text at 417-380-2556 or email at [email protected].
Springfield-Greene County Health Department
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