Recent studies have shown that a comprehensive, multi-strategy response to the opioid epidemic results in the greatest impact on reducing the burden of the epidemic. In 2017, North Carolina announced the Opioid Action Plan (NC OAP), a multi-year strategic plan that outlines seven key focus areas to reduce the burden of opioid overdose deaths, including reducing the oversupply of prescription opioids, reducing the flow of diverted and illicit opioids, increasing community prevention, making naloxone widely available, expanding treatment, measuring the impact, and creating a coordinated infrastructure to implement each of the other six strategies. Executing such an approach has required substantial coordination across state, local, and community partners operating in a variety of fields.
This presentation will overview the NC OAP, including the initiatives that have been implemented to advance its strategies. Such initiatives have included: providing community funding to support post overdose reversal response teams, syringe exchange programs, and connecting justice-involved populations to treatment; placing peer support specialists in emergency departments to connect overdose survivors to care; increasing the number of medical residency programs which provide MAT waiver training to all residents; and piloting an alternative payment model for opioid addiction treatment. The presenter also will highlight the coordinated infrastructure that has been created to support the strategies of the NC OAP. The presentation will reflect on key successes and lessons learned two years into the NC OAP.