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IDOH and CDC Rx Awareness Campaign

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What you need to know:

  • Most opioids are prescription medications used to treat pain.
  • Opioids are highly addictive.
  • Opioid addiction and overdose is a growing problem both nationally and within the state of Indiana.
  • There are other effective ways to deal with pain.
  • Opioid use at a young age increases the potential for addiction later in life.
  • Prescribers play a role in the supply and use of opioids in our communities.

About the campaign

Overdose deaths involving prescription opioids in the United States have quadrupled since 1999. This national epidemic is impacting Indiana as well, where more than 3,000 people have died due to prescription opioid overdose in the last 15 years. In fact, more Hoosiers die each year from prescription drug overdoses than from motor vehicle accidents. To address this public health crisis, the Indiana Department of Health (IDOH) is taking part in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC’s) Rx Awareness campaign.

The Rx Awareness campaign tells the real stories of people whose lives were devastated by prescription opioids. The ultimate goal is to increase awareness that prescription opioids can be addictive and dangerous. This effort also strives to decrease the number of individuals who use opioids recreationally or overuse them.

Campaign materials

Watch the videos below to hear personal testimonials from people directly affected by the opioid overdose epidemic.

Rx Awareness Campaign

Ann Marie’s Story - Ann Marie is a mother who lost her 22-year old son, Chris, to a prescription opioid overdose.

Devin’s Story - Devin shares his Rx Awareness story of using prescription opioids after a minor surgery as a teenager and his path to recovery from opioid use disorder.

Mike’s Story - Mike became addicted to a prescription opioid.  He ended up leaving school and no longer playing college sports.  At the time he "didn't understand the dangers of the drug and was addicted after a matter of months."

Ask yourself, “Do I really need this?”

If you are prescribed opioids, talk with your doctor about the risks, including addiction and overdose.

Take action and help

Whether you are a healthcare provider, first responder, law enforcement officer, public health official, or area resident, the opioid epidemic is likely affecting you and your community. No matter who you are, you can take action to end the opioid overdose epidemic. We all have a role to play on the frontlines of this fight—it starts with addressing prescription opioid misuse and overdose.

  • Avoid taking prescription painkillers more often than prescribed.
  • Dispose of medications properly, as soon as the course of treatment is done. Avoid keeping prescription painkillers or sedatives around "just in case."
  • Help prevent misuse by not selling or sharing prescription drugs. Never use another person's prescription drugs.
  • Learn more about prescription opioids, and spread the word to increase awareness in your community about the risks and dangers.
  • Help those struggling with addiction find the right care and treatment. Start by calling the Indiana Addiction Hotline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357). If you have questions about medicines, call Poison Help at 1-800-222-1222.

Learn more