IN FOCUS: Update on Philadelphia’s Opioid Epidemic

The Kensington neighborhood of Philadelphia has captured national attention in the midst of the opioid epidemic, some officials in the past calling it the “epicenter” of Philadelphia’s open-air illicit drug market.

The Opioid Epidemic has a devastating impact to individuals, families and some entire communities. In April of this year, the Philadelphia Department of Public Health announced that 1,217 people died of a drug overdose in Philadelphia County in 2017. In March 2018, the CDC announced that 63,632 people died of a drug overdose in the United States in 2016. Joining host, Jennifer Lewis-Hall, to discuss the national crisis and its impact here in our region are two commissioners - Philadelphia’s Health Commissioner Dr. Thomas Farley as well as Philadelphia’s Commissioner of Behavioral Health and Intellectual Services David Jones. Reverend Richard Harris of Firm Hope Baptist Church in Kensington shares his own history with addiction and what he’s doing to help those addicted to opioids. Michelle DeBellis LPC and Director of Outpatient Services at Maryville Addiction Treatment Centers of New Jersey, as well as Barrett Young who is the COO of the Rescue Mission of Trenton also join Jennifer to talk about the importance of treatment and education. “In Focus” is broadcast Saturdays at 6:30 AM on PHL17.