NEPTUNE (NJ.com) – Lawmakers, healthcare professionals, members of law enforcement and representatives from behavioral health organizations and insurance companies were among nearly 20 people who sat down to discuss the heroin epidemic during a forum at Jersey Shore University Medical Center on Monday.
Assemblywoman Mary Pat Angelini (R-Monmouth), who is also the executive director at Prevention First, said she organized the forum to get people from all aspects of professions together to discuss the heroin and opiate problem in Monmouth County.
She said her goal is to make discussing substance abuse part of integrated healthcare.
Angelini said there needs to be an environmental change and it’s not just a public health or law enforcement problem.
A pilot program launched in Monmouth and Ocean counties this year, put the opioid antidote Naloxone, also known as Narcan, in the hands of law enforcement.
To date, there have been 66 opiate overdose reversals in Ocean County since April, and 21 since June in Monmouth County.