KCMS Alliance Holds Parent Forum on Opioid Epidemic

News & Media

KCMS Alliance Holds Parent Forum on Opioid Epidemic

Saturday, September 30, 2017

By Alexis Boyden, President, KCMS Alliance

The Kent County Medical Society Alliance held a health forum, "Opioid Awareness for Parents and Guardians," last May in Grand Rapids, and is currently launching an online public education campaign using footage from the event.

Panelists at the spring forum included: Mary DeBoer, a parent who lost her son to overdose; Brandon Hool, a recovering addict and Overdose Prevention Manager at The Red Project Grand Rapids; and Sandra K. Dettmann, MD, an addiction specialist. The forum was moderated by Jeanne M. Kapenga, MD, Board President of Families Against Narcotics (FAN) Grand Rapids Chapter. FAN was also a collaborator in planning the forum.

The event included a drug take back facilitated by the Kent County Sheriff's Dept. Eight pounds of prescription drugs were collected that night which is about 16% of what is collected in the county in one month.

Due to a grant from the Alliance Health Education Initiative, the KCMS Alliance was able to hire a videographer to film the forum and create videos of each speaker to help reach a larger audience via social media. Videos from the forum that are included in the online campaign are "Just a Regular Family," "How Addiction Begins," "Addiction is a Disease," and four others. The first was released on August 31 in recognition of International Overdose Awareness Day.

You may follow the KCMS Alliance and their opioid awareness education campaign on Facebook and YouTube.