Police Jury launches Calcasieu opioid survey

Published 9:41 am Monday, May 6, 2024

Completing a brief Opioid Impact Survey could help the Calcasieu Parish Police Jury determine how to spend opioid settlement money. Mortality rates and deaths due to overdose in Calcasieu Parish doubled from 2020 to 2021, and a recent WalletHub report highlights the importance of making every dollar of the state’s $325 million settlement from a pharmaceutical company and three of its distributors count. Louisiana ranks 7th for the state with the “biggest drug problem.” It is No. 3 for opioid pain reliever prescriptions, fourth in drug overdose deaths, sixth in drug arrests and 10th in share of adults who could not get treatment for illicit drug use in the past year.

The CPPJ will get $550,000 a year from the settlement for the next 18 years .

“We have contracted an independent third-party management consulting firm, and we are working to identify the gaps in services – unmet needs, barriers to care and funding priorities – and how the funds can best be used to benefit the citizens of Calcasieu Parish,” said Tom Hoefer, CPPJ spokesperson.

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The survey is anonymous. To complete it, go to calcasieu.gov/opioids survey. Paper copies may be completed and submitted at the following locations during business hours: Parish Government Building, 1015 Pithon St., Lake Charles, or the Allen P. August Multi-Purpose Center, 2001 Moeling St., Lake Charles.

The WalletHub study compares the 50 states and the District of Columbia in terms of 20 key metrics.

States with an even bigger problem than Louisiana are New Mexico in the top spot, then West Virginia, Nevada, District of Columbia, Colorado and at number six, Missouri.