New year, new laws: State makes changes to opioids, auto insurance, and taxes

Several new state laws went into effect Jan. 1, including those concerning opioids, auto insurance, occupational licensing, commercial real estate transactions, fertility preservation, and taxes. Opioids In an effort to prevent prescription opioid diversion and abuse, two provisions made to Public Act No. 17-131 went into effect Jan. 1. One requires “certain individual and group health insurance policies” to cover … read more

Prevention Plus: Opioid epidemic spreads to CT

Communities like Ridgefield are struggling with a relatively new national crisis. According to the CDC, “The United States is in the midst of an opioid overdose epidemic.” Often linked to the rise in OxyContin prescriptions, to treat pain, opioids have quickly gone mainstream. The amount of prescription opioids sold in the U.S. has nearly quadrupled since 1999, the CDC reports. … read more

Prevention Plus: opioid addiction

Guest writer is Ellen Brezovsky LCSW of Silver Hill Hospital, director of community relations and RPC adviser. How do we begin to make sense of the terrible impact of opioid addiction on our communities? The highly addictive nature of opioids, prescription pain medication or heroin makes them dangerous. The increased availability of prescription opioids puts them in reach of young and … read more

VIDEO: Father has plan to crush opioid crisis

Gary Mendell and his son Brian, who took his own life in 2011 when he could no longer cope with the stigma of addiction.

Two men from different perspectives but with a common mission to beat the opioid epidemic met on a recent Friday morning at the Easton Police Department to deal with the crisis. Former hotel executive Gary Mendell leads Shatterproof, a national nonprofit he founded to end the devastation that addiction causes families. Before joining the Easton Police Department in 2015, Chief … read more

Reasons for rise in opioid addiction

Shatterproof founder Gary Mendell shook hands with Gov. Dannell Malloy when Connecticut enacted a state law on July 15, 2015, that changed the number of pills doctors can prescribe for pain to help prevent opioid addiction.

Science has proven that substance use disorder is a chronic brain disease that can be managed with medical treatment. It is not a moral failing or a character flaw. But still, only one in 10 Americans with a substance use disorder receives treatment. Addiction is highly stigmatized, and stigma is fueling the public health crisis, according to Gary Mendell, who … read more

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