Dr. Patrice Harris.
Photo: David Hathcox/David Hathcox
Photo: David Hathcox/David Hathcox

Town hall takes a look at opioid crisis in Georgia

Dr. Patrice Harris, president-elect of the American Medical Association will be one of the featured speakers at a town hall meeting that looks at ways to combat the opioid crisis.

The “New Hope for the Opioid Epidemic” event  will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday at the Emory University School of Medicine, 100 Woodruff Circle. The event is free and open to the public.

There were more than 1,475 opioid-related deaths in Georgia in 2017, up 16.1 percent from the previous year, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention.

The state recently sued pharmaceutical companies accusing them of flooding the state with pain-relief products and profiting from users’ addictions. 

  A panel discussion will examine the impact of the epidemic in Georgia, addiction stigma and what patients and health care providers can do to stem the rise. 

 Other speakers include Dr. Martha Wilber, president, Medical Association of Atlanta, Jim Langford, executive director of the Georgia Prevention Project; Allie Armbruster, and, Dr. Justine Welsh, program director, Emory Adolescent Substance Abuse Treatment Services. 

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