Training & Events


April 22-25, 2019
Atlanta, GA

The Rx Drug Abuse & Heroin Summit is the largest national collaboration of professionals from local, state, and federal agencies, business, academia, treatment providers, and allied communities impacted by prescription drug abuse and heroin use. It is the event for decision makers and allied professionals working to address this public health emergency. The Summit is now the annual gathering for stakeholders to discuss what’s working in prevention and treatment.

This year Ventura County Behavioral Health presented on “Saving Lives: Ventura County’s Overdose Prevention Program.” Presenters include Loretta Denering, DrPH, MS, Chief, Alcohol and Drug Programs Division, Kristen Donovan, PhD, Evalcorp, Research & Consulting, Daniel Hicks, Manager, Prevention Services, and Ashley Nettles, Overdose Prevention Program.  

The Overdose Prevention Program was designed to address the opioid epidemic locally by providing response training and naloxone kits to individuals with an elevated risk of experiencing an overdose or those likely to come into contact with someone who may experience overdose. The program provides overdose education to substance users, their families and key public agencies, to generate actionable data. The program launched in 2014 through the county’s Rx Abuse & Heroin Workgroup to reduce opioid-related deaths at a local level. Core components of the program include overdose prevention, recognition, and response education, as well as kit tracking and utilization data.


> Read more about the Overdose Prevention Program

> Read about the Rx Drug Abuse & Heroin Summit



Prescribers may underestimate the risks of opioid addiction while overestimating painkiller benefits. The Ventura County Rx Abuse & Heroin Workgroup offers prescribers, hospitals and clinics up-to-date information and training for safe prescribing and on-site patient education. Safe prescriber education addresses the opioid epidemic by training prescribers to respond before opioids are prescribed. See the Safe Prescribing Toolkit.

When opioids are used, start low and go slow:

  • Assess pain and function
  • Consider if non-opioid therapies are appropriate
  • Talk to patients about treatment plan
  • Evaluate risk of harm of misuses
  • Identify drug misuse/addiction
  • Query CURES 2.0 to confirm patient information

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