TurnTheTideNC at the School of Nursing

The Duke Emergency Nursing Students (DENS), in partnership with the Duke University School of Nursing (DUSON), is launching TurnTheTideNC on Monday, March 6, from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. in collaboration with the United States Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy’s national tour, TurnTheTideRx. The keynote speaker is RADM Susan Orsega, chief nursing officer for the U.S. Public Health Services.

TurnTheTideRx is a national effort to engage the medical community and promote medical stewardship of prescriptive practices for opioid medications. The launch of TurnTheTideNC will serve as a call to action and discussion on how the emergency care community can turn the tide in North Carolina as a statewide initiative to address the opioid epidemic. Members from the health care community will join with RADM Orsega and key stakeholders in North Carolina to discuss how individuals practicing in and engaged with the emergency care setting can work together to advance the efforts of the NC Department of Health and Human Services and the strategic plan for our state.

Haley Harris-Bloom and Haley Gandsey, both Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing students and members of DENS, were key in getting the tour stop here at DUSON. “Dr. Carman introduced the Surgeon General’s initiative to end the opioid crisis to our club, and I instantly wanted to get involved,” said Harris-Bloom. “Having lost friends and family to opioid addiction, this issue hits home for me.”

During this event, participants will:

  • Create an environment for awareness, discussion and networking to advance the goals of the North Carolina Strategic Plan for Reducing Prescription Opioid Abuse.
  • Engage key members in the discussion of developing initial recommendations for how North Carolina can further align itself with the national TurnTheTideRx initiative.
  • Develop strategies for reducing the availability of nontherapeutic opioids in the community through education of health care providers and the greater community.
  • Identify the barriers that are created through stigmatization of patients presenting to the emergency care system with a history of or concern for opioid abuse.
  • Provide networking opportunities for members of the health care, legislative and greater community to partner in accomplishing the common goal of eliminating inappropriate use and overdoses of opioids in North Carolina.

“Here at home in North Carolina, we’ve experienced a 350 percent increase in deaths secondary to overdose since 1999 with an overwhelming majority of drug overdoses being related to prescription opioid medication,” said Marion E. Broome, PhD, RN, FAAN, dean and Ruby Wilson Professor of Nursing for DUSON, vice chancellor for Nursing Affairs for Duke University, and associate vice president for Academic Affairs for Nursing for Duke University Health System. “Health care providers across the trajectory of emergency care, from the prehospital setting to patient disposition, are able to greatly affect the magnitude of the opioid epidemic.”

The impact of opioid abuse is felt routinely in the emergency care setting, where patients often present to obtain substances for misuse or following overdose. Emergency services are at the forefront of this battle to halt the surge in opioid related overdoses and death.

“As health care providers, we must take an active role in engaging in this process,” said Meg Carman, DNP, ACNP-BC, ENP-BC, FAEN, assistant professor and faculty advisor for the DENS.  “We must determine strategies to stop inappropriate prescribing practices, promote the availability of lifesaving measures for the treatment of overdose and provide humane assistance to those facing opioid addiction.”

Carman said this event will allow the health care community and key stakeholders, such as members of the community directly affected by the epidemic, law enforcement and members of the legislative community, to work together to address this issue.

Gandsey added: “As current students and future nurse leaders, we are acutely aware of the importance of interdisciplinary dialogue and action. We hope this event can create an environment for stakeholders on all levels to come together and reduce prescription opioid abuse in North Carolina.”

Take part in TurnTheTideNC and reserve your spot now at http://bit.ly/TTTNC.

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