Dismas Charities Charleston’s SSC Megan Vance Meets U.S. Senator Joe Manchin At Opioid Forum


At a recent forum to discuss finding solutions to the opioid crisis, Charleston Social Services Coordinator Megan Vance (below right) met with U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-West Virginia). Sponsored by Highmark Foundation Healthcare, the event targeted the West Virginia aspects of the problem. The state leads all others in the number of opioid overdoses, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Over 600 deaths occur annually in the Mountain State. The CDC noted that in 2015, 47,055 deaths occurred in the United States resulting from drug overdose. To combat the issues, Senator Manchin, along with five others, introduced a bill known as The Lifeboat Act which would establish permanent funding to expand access to addiction treatment facilities by requiring pharmaceutical companies to pay a fee. “A major barrier that those suffering from opioid addition face is insufficient access to substance abuse treatment,” Manchin said. ”This legislation will bridge that gap and make sure that we can provide treatment to everyone who makes the decision to get help.” He has also been instrumental in getting a national program established whereby people can turn in expired and unwanted prescription pills to police for proper destruction. “With Megan’s attendance Dismas Charities Charleston was honored to be able to join with Senator Manchin and other community leaders to devise strategies to battle this epidemic,” said Director Jim Sands. Manchin is former Secretary of State and Governor of West Virginia.

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