Engaging Ohio Business Leaders on Prescription Opioid Safety Efforts

AAOA is committed to working with the public health, healthcare, higher education and business communities to raise awareness about the rights, risks and responsibilities associated with prescription opioids. Over the last several months, we have had the opportunity to work with business communities across the country, including those in Ohio, to leverage the workplace in efforts to engage and raise awareness about the rights, risks and responsibilities associated with prescription opioids.

AAOA has been able to advance the conversation around prescription opioid abuse prevention in the workplace through partnerships with organizations representing Ohio’s business community. Since March, AAOA has sponsored three events to foster communication around proactive solutions to combat the opioid abuse crisis in the state.

Our first opportunity to meet with business leaders took place when AAOA partnered with the Dayton Area Chamber of Commerce at its annual 2018 Human Resources Forum. Together, AAOA and the Dayton chamber promoted best practices around the proper storage and safe disposal of pain medicines, and highlighted available resources that the community could use in response to opioid abuse epidemic.

In April, AAOA and the Brecksville and Broadview Heights Chambers of Commerce brought together business owners and managers to drive awareness, provide educational resources and discuss new approaches to addressing how the opioid abuse crisis is affecting communities in northeast Ohio. Attendees learned about the importance of properly disposing unused and expired prescription opioids and other medicines that may be sitting in their home medicine cabinets — an important reminder because opioid misuse often starts in the home.

Building off a connection that was made at the Dayton event in March, AAOA joined SEW-Eurodrive, a local automaker that is working to raise awareness about the seriousness of the opioid abuse epidemic among its workforce, at the company’s employee health fair in Troy, Ohio. AAOA shared resources about the rights, risks and responsibilities related to prescription opioids, which includes the safe use, storage and disposal of opioids. Through conversations with nearly 100 community members, AAOA was able to once again provide information and promote proper disposal practices, including taking unused pills to designated medicine disposal sites or using disposal bags that they can neutralize opioids and other medications in their home medicine cabinets. AAOA also has created an online disposal database that allows anyone to enter their zip code and find a safe disposal drop-off location in their neighborhood.

Through our panel discussions, forums and one-on-one conversations with representatives from Ohio’s business community, we are making great strides as we work together to combat the prescription opioid epidemic.We look forward to future collaborations with these groups as we continue raising awareness about prescription opioid safety across Ohio and the rest of the country.