PCC-TV Show Profiles How Pinellas Is Fighting Prescription Drug Abuse
The numbers are alarming. Statistically, every 32 hours in Pinellas County someone dies of a drug overdose. In 2010, 280 people died of accidental drug overdoses with 249 of these deaths being due to abuse of prescription pain medication.
A new, four-part series on Pinellas County Connection Television called Fighting Back Against Prescription Drug Abuse profiles the extent of the problem in Pinellas County and what local officials are doing to combat the issue through law enforcement, local ordinances and public education.
In part one, guests Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri and Director of Pinellas County Department of Justice and Consumer Services Tim Burns relate local efforts to control illicit drug pill mills.
In part two, Laurie Serra, cofounder of the Pinellas Chapter of Narcotics Overdose Prevention and Education (NOPE) and Jackie Griffin from Operation PAR and the Live Free Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition discuss public education efforts to enlighten parents and young people to the dangers of prescription drug abuse.
Part three finds Dr. Cynthia Lewis-Younger from Tampa General Hospital and Judge Dee Anna Farnell of Pinellas County’s Drug Court talking about the dangers of synthetic drugs and the legal problems associated with their control.
The program concludes as Sgt. Dan Zsido from the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office and Jan Tracy from Pinellas County Solid Waste explain safe ways to dispose of prescription medication including the county’s Operation Medicine Cabinet initiative.
The program is hosted by Len Ciecieznski from Pinellas County Communications and Investigator Paul Melton from the county’s Department of Justice and Consumer Services.
Fighting Back Against Prescription Drug Abuse will be airing on PCC-TV on Bright House Channel 622, Verizon Channel 44 and Knology Channel 18 or may be viewed through the Pinellas County website at www.pinellascounty.org/fightingback. A monthly PCC-TV program schedule may be found at www.pinellascounty.org/tv/tvschedule.pdf
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