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Credit: J.Burkett, 1080 KRLD

Texas Turns to The Internet To Help Fight Opioid Overdoses

January 22, 2019 - 5:42 pm
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By Chris Fox 

AUSTIN (KRLD) - The State launched its latest initiative to combat the opioid crisis. Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton rolled out Dose of Reality, a new comprehensive website to inform and educate Texans about the dangers of misusing prescription painkillers. The new site is available at www.DoseofReality.Texas.gov. Paxton was joined at a press conference by Department of State Health Services Commissioner Dr. John Hellerstedt and Health and Human Services Executive Commissioner Courtney N. Phillips.

“The misuse and abuse of prescription opioids cost lives and devastate Texas families in every region of our state,” Attorney General Paxton said. “Opioids such as OxyContin and hydrocodone are prescribed by doctors to treat moderate to severe pain, but have serious risks and side effects. When patients are not well informed, these drugs can inflict far more pain than they prevent. The Dose of Reality website is intended to give Texans the information they need to avoid those unintended consequences. My office will continue to do everything it can to protect Texans from the opioid crisis.”

Dose of Reality provides individuals, patients, health care providers, teachers, coaches and others with opioid-related resources in one location, allowing for quick and easy access to vital information. The new website includes details on approaches to preventing opioid abuse and addiction, proper pain management, safe storage of prescription painkillers and guidelines on responding to an opioid overdose. It also features a statewide take back map of locations that accept prescription opioids for safe disposal. 

Opioids are a family of drugs that include prescription painkillers such as OxyContin as well as illegal drugs like heroin. Each day, 115 Americans die of opioid overdoses. Nationwide, there were 42,249 opioid overdoses in 2016, including 1,375 opioid-related deaths in Texas. The death toll attributed to opioids in the U.S. has quadrupled over the last two decades.