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April 02, 2019 (Cleveland)

The Center, Opioid Consortium Host International Visitors Seeking Information about the Opioid Crisis



The Center, Opioid Consortium Host International Visitors Seeking Information about the Opioid CrisisThe Center for Health Affairs and the Northeast Ohio Hospital Opioid Consortium this month hosted a group of international visitors who came to Cleveland seeking information about the opioid crisis and innovative work being done to address it in the region.

The meeting with the Opioid Consortium’s executive committee was arranged by the Cleveland Council on World Affairs, working with the U.S. Department of State’s International Visitor Leadership Program. Visitors came from Afghanistan, China, Cypress, Mongolia, Morocco, Seychelles and Sierra Leone. Their professional backgrounds were varied and included public health, mental health, pharmacy and food safety.

While in Cleveland the visitors met with several organizations including Recovery Resources, the Lorain County Drug Task Force, MedWish and the Cuyahoga County Opiate Task Force. Their stay in Cleveland was one stop on their three-week tour of the U.S. organized around the theme of “Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis.”

During their stop at The Center for Health Affairs, they learned about the region’s experience with the opioid epidemic, the origins of the Opioid Consortium, and the work underway by participating organizations both collaboratively and individually to reverse the crisis. Significant time during the meeting was dedicated to discussing medication-assisted treatment (MAT), with Opioid Consortium members sharing about local programs and fielding questions from the guests on the types of treatment available, how they work and how treatment costs are covered.

The guest from China discussed the difference in the culture of pain management in his country. There, alternative pain management techniques are commonly used and people simply accept that pain will not go away completely. In email correspondence following the visit, he shared that a number of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) universities teach acupuncture, which has been utilized for a few thousand years and is widely recognized and practiced in community clinics. Acupuncture, together with other traditional alternative therapies like massage, is quite often used for non-cancer pain management in China.

MORE: For more information about the opioid crisis and the Northeast Ohio Hospital Opioid Consortium’s work to combat it, contact us.

TWEETABLE: The Northeast Ohio Hospital #OpioidConsortium & @neohospitals hosted visitors from around the world seeking information about the opioid crisis and our regional response to it.