On National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, free grassroots public event unites hundreds
Since 2015, there has been a 50 percent increase in drug-related deaths in Bucks County, Pennsylvania — one of the highest increases across the state. To raise awareness and connect people in need to local recovery resources, Independence Blue Cross (Independence) sponsored the Together We Can Convention, a grassroots event held in Newtown, Pennsylvania, on April 28, National Prescription Drug Take Back Day. The convention united hundreds of individuals — including legislators, law enforcement, recovery specialists, and the public — to address the opioid addiction epidemic.
In addition to inspirational speakers and educational workshops, including a Narcan (naloxone) training session, the free event provided a secure site for people to dispose of unused or unwanted prescription medications. In addition, Independence hosted a panel discussion that addressed one of the most serious barriers to combating the opioid epidemic: the stigma of addiction. The panel highlighted personal stories of the effect of opioid abuse and efforts to increase awareness and understanding.