Opioid Coordinator Speaks

Terry Kerns speaks to 600 Freshmen
Posted on 04/11/2019
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Terry Kerns, substance abuse and law enforcement coordinator with the Nevada Office of the Attorney General, spoke at Carson High School this morning to more than 300 freshmen about the opioid crisis facing Nevada and the science of addiction. She also discussed the laws that are being passed in the state to help and protect against this deadly habit, how to bring awareness to the opioid crisis and hopefully prevent students getting caught up in the addiction cycle. She will offer the same presentation again tomorrow to the remaining 300 freshmen on the same topics.

Since being appointed by the Nevada Attorney General’s Office in 2017, Kerns has endeavored to bridge the gap between local law enforcement and state victims’ service providers, to ensure a coordinated response to the opioid crisis in Nevada.

“Terry is a former Special Agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Ph.D. and registered nurse. She spoke with students last year and has since honed her presentation on methods and resources available to combat statewide substance abuse,” said Erin Been, Health teacher at Carson High. “We’re happy to have her back for this public education partnership and statewide outreach.”

The opioid epidemic exists in all counties in Nevada. The Nevada Department of Health and Human Services reports that in 2016, 408 Nevada residents lost their lives to opioid-related overdoses. In 2016, Nevada’s per capita prescription rate for opioids was 87/100 residents. Opioid related hospitalizations have increased from 2010 to 2016 by 136 percent in emergency room encounters and 84 percent in inpatient admissions. Even with a slight decline in the number of opioid-related deaths from 2010 to 2016, 85 percent of all opioid-related deaths in Nevada were deemed accidents.