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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — For years, West Virginia has had the nation’s highest rate of opioid drug addictions and drug overdose deaths. Now the state is wrestling with another, not entirely unrelated health emergency: one of the nation’s highest spikes in HIV cases related to intravenous drug use. The surge, clustered primarily around the capital… Read More
Fewer than a third of the 220 counties deemed by the federal government as vulnerable to similar outbreaks have active syringe exchange programs which can stop the spread of the infection.
Drug maker Gilead Sciences will give $11.3 million to help prevent and treat hepatitis C in Kentucky, Indiana, West Virginia, Tennessee and North Carolina. That money is part of a five-year project aimed at a region that’s been hit hard by the viral disease. About 43,000 people in Kentucky have hepatitis C, according to recent estimates from Emory University. A 2017 report showed… Read More
U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams threw his support behind syringe exchange services as an important tool to address the Ohio Valley’s high risk of needle-borne disease associated with the opioid epidemic. Adams visited Florence, in northern Kentucky, for an event to encourage more people to get trained to administer the overdose-reversal drug naloxone. Dressed in a full,… Read More
Greg Lee, Kentucky’s HIV/AIDS educator, starts the town hall on a somber note. “How many people in this room know someone who has died of an overdose death?” It is a standing-room only crowd. Most hands go up. “Amazing,” he says, sadly. The meeting is at the Bourbon County Public Health Department, just next to… Read More