Texas AG, health officials launch website against opioid crisis

Austin

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Texas launched a new resource to help fight opioid abuse. The site’s goal is to make it easier for you to find answers that can save lives.

The Texas Attorney General teamed with the Texas Department of State Health Services and the Health and Human Services Commission to roll out a new website, called doseofreality.texas.gov. 

It’s meant to be a one-stop-shop for families dealing with the opioid epidemic here in Texas. It has an interactive map that tells families where they can dispose of their drugs when they’re done using them. It also has educational resources for training and for families in crisis.

“Dose of Reality represents the beginning of a larger campaign to prevent opioid misuse in Texas through education. When patients aren’t well informed, these drugs can inflict far more pain than they prevent,” said Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton.

Attorney General Ken Paxton is also in a lawsuit with Purdue over misleading advertisements they say contribute to this opioid epidemic. As for local doctors who over-prescribe medication that could lead to addiction, Attorney General Ken Paxton’s office said that’s up to the local district attorney to prosecute those crimes.

Former addicts and social workers say the resource will help.

“You know what I understand what you’re going through. I’ve been there, I think sometimes it’s what people want and need to hear,” said Christi Goll.

Years ago she started with prescription medications, a habit that eventually led to heroin and a drug court. Seven years clean, she’s an in-take specialist at SAGE Recovery and Wellness Center. 

“Substance abuse is not biased. It doesn’t matter who you are. It can happen to anybody,” said Goll, “People like to think it’s that guy standing on the corner but if you look at the statistics it’s a lot bigger of an issue than that.”

People don’t know what they don’t know and for addicts, knowing where to get help and what’s available is a challenge according to CEO of SAGE, Tiffany Anschutz.

“I think it’s a good place to start to kind of help people start beginning the process to go ‘so, what do I do,” said Anschutz.

She says people still need work on the basics like not flushing pills down the toilet or throwing them away in any garbage can. 

“Please don’t do that.  That goes into our water right. That goes into our landfills. Other people could then have access to it if they’re digging through trash cans and things like that,” said Anschutz.

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