A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

State social services staff gets enhanced training to help families with substance use disorder

Kentucky’s Department for Community Based Services (DCBS) staff began specialized training on Thursday in best practices to address substance use disorder in the families they serve. The training is part of the Kentucky Opioid Response Effort (KORE), the Cabinet for Health and Family Services’ overall effort to combat the opioid crisis. DCBS trainees will learn about stigmas surrounding substance...

Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky seeking input about topics, questions to be included in next KHIP

The Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky is seeking input about the topics and questions to be included in the next Kentucky Health Issues Poll (KHIP). The deadline for suggestions is Aug. 9. KHIP is a telephone poll of Kentucky adults, asking their views on key health policy issues likely to come before the legislature or local policy-making bodies. KHIP also asks adults’ opinions on health-related...

Medicaid waiver to expand coverage, increase care access for Kentuckians with Substance Use Disorder

The Commonwealth of Kentucky is set to expand access to treatment and recovery services for individuals with Substance Use Disorder (SUD) through a portion of its 1115 Medicaid demonstration waiver, beginning July 1. This program further amplifies the Commonwealth’s overall efforts to fight the opioid crisis, as well as other substance addictions. With Kentucky’s commitment to combatting opioid,...

KHIP: State mobilizing against complex issues around substance abuse disorders

Nearly a third of Kentucky adults (31%) reported that they have a friend or family member who has experienced problems in the past 12 months as a result of using drugs, according to data released from the 2018 Kentucky Health Issues Poll (KHIP). The KHIP data is consistent with other statistics showing the prevalence of substance use disorders in the Commonwealth: Kentucky reported 1,566 overdose deaths...

Commentary: Make substance abuse disorder treatment available when needed; it’s common sense

By Kim Moser and Bruce Scott Years of struggling, lost employment, disconnection from family, a feeling of hopelessness — all common issues faced by those suffering from substance abuse disorder. In many cases, interaction with the criminal justice system can also be added to the list. But what if someone wants assistance before they hit rock bottom? There is hope. Addiction is a chronic brain disease...

Health policy forum to provide update on Kentucky’s substance abuse epidemic, discuss solutions

An update on solutions to Kentucky’s substance use epidemic is the topic for the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky’s annual health policy forum, to be held from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Monday, September 24, at the Marriott Griffin Gate in Lexington. Speakers at the Howard L. Bost Memorial Health Policy Forum will share strategies to address the crisis, including responses to rising infectious...

Mitch McConnell: Addiction, the public health crisis of this generation, is creating a workforce emergency

Substance abuse is the public health crisis of this generation. It’s claiming lives in Kentucky and across the nation at an unprecedented rate. Like nearly half of all Americans, you or your family probably know someone whose life has been torn apart because of drug addiction. But as a leader in Kentucky’s business community recently noted, this problem isn’t only devastating families and communities....

Social work researcher trains students, health care pros to ask tough questions about substance misuse

By Ann Blackford and Alicia Gregory Special to KyForward The beginning of research is to identify and define a problem. The researcher must ask questions, sometimes difficult and complex questions, to gain knowledge and understanding before arriving at a solution. This same process is identical in social work practice, yet some of those questions are deeply personal and difficult to ask but nonetheless...

Veteran mountain storyteller Steven Hollen adds coda to substance abuse prevention lesson

By Carol Lea Spence Special to KyForward In the first row, a young boy sat, round brown eyes glued to the presenter who paced a few feet in front of him. His gaze never wavered. The message he was listening to seemed to be sinking in. That’s what Steven Hollen was aiming for. Hollen, a storyteller with a musical, rolling accent that reflects the Eastern Kentucky hills in which he grew up, recently...

Extension agents help battle substance abuse through community partnerships, education

By Carl Nathe and Katie Pratt Special to KyForward   For many Kentuckians, the effects of substance abuse are all too real as they’ve either watched their friends and family struggle with these issues or have personally battled addiction.   (From UKNow) A study published previously by the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration found that Kentucky led the nation in...