Funds will be used partly for interventions in high-risk counties
WASHINGTON, D.C. (Sept. 4, 2015) — Tom Frieden, Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), announced today that the Kentucky Injury Prevention and Research Center (KIPRC) has been awarded $940,000 each year for the next four years to combat the prescription drug abuse and heroin epidemic in Kentucky, said. Sen. Mitch McConnell.
McConnell wrote a letter of support to CDC earlier this year on behalf of KIPRC, which is a partnership between the Kentucky Department for Public Health and the University of Kentucky.
“The opioid epidemic continues to wreak havoc on communities and families throughout the commonwealth,” McConnell said. “I am pleased to see Dr. Frieden continue to prioritize federal funding opportunities at CDC to help identify and prevent prescription drug abuse and heroin use in Kentucky. I look forward to seeing how this competitive grant enhances the efforts of KIPRC in saving lives.”
Funds will be used to improve controlled substances prescribing practices and to evaluate drug overdose prevention interventions for prescription drugs and heroin. The effort will allow Kentucky to continue to enhance and implement one of the nation’s leading prescription drug monitoring programs, commonly known as KASPER; by improving interoperability with electronic health record systems.
Funds will also be used to target interventions in counties with some of the highest rates of drug overdoses, including Jefferson, Fayette, Boone, Kenton and Campbell.
“Nearly 150,000 Americans have died from prescription drug overdoses in the past decade, and Kentucky has been hit especially hard,” said Frieden. “Because we can protect many Americans from becoming addicted to opioids, we must take swift action to help states track prescriptions to improve safer prescribing. Kentucky has taken action and has the leadership and commitment to turn the tide on this epidemic.”