NEW BERN, Craven County — More than 2,300 people died from a drug overdose in North Carolina back in 2017, according to research from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Craven Community College's Adult Enrichment Program (AEP) wants to see that number at 0. The college hosted a symposium entitled "Stop the Cravin'!" to promote substance abuse education, prevention and intervention on Thursday.
This free event featured a panel of speakers from local health care providers, local and state law enforcement and community-based organizations.
The panel provided statistics for the area, health effects and the science behind the many aspects of addiction, case studies and firsthand accounts from those in the medical field.
Former addicts, an emergency room charge nurse and local law enforcement also spoke at the event.
Those in attendance were taught how to recognize the signs and symptoms of opioid and related substance abuse issues, as well as how to intervene and prevent future addictions. Equipping people with knowledge so they know what to do can ensure that loved ones don't become just another statistic, according to medical professionals.
"Our goal is to raise awareness of the substance abuse epidemic that is steadily increasing and affecting our community and communities throughout the country, and in turn aid in the prevention of their use," said Megan Johnson, AEP coordinator. "It is our hope that this symposium will be of great benefit to those who have been touched by this crisis and who are impacted in their daily personal and professional lives."
Watch the video to learn more.