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Second annual opioid forum set for today in Rowan County

SALISBURY — The second annual Rowan County opioid forum will be held from 3 to 9 p.m. today at West End Plaza, 1935 W. Jake Alexander Blvd.

Registration has closed for the forum because space was limited. But pre-registration is not required to hear the featured speaker tonight.

Journalist Sam Quinones, a former LA Times reporter and author of three acclaimed books, will speak at 7 p.m. A question-and-answer session will follow.

Quinones’ most recent book, “Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic,” depicts the current opioid crisis.

The afternoon forum will include a panel discussion by experts on substance abuse and addiction; speakers who’ve been affected personally by the opioid epidemic; presentations by county officials on the opioid crisis’ impact in Rowan County; and discussion of resources and opportunities for mental health assistance.

In 2016, an average of five people a day died from drug overdoses in North Carolina with a total of 1,965 deaths for the year. Forty-three of those deaths were in Rowan County.
A medication take-back hosted by Rowan County Health Education will be from 3 to 6 p.m. Anyone is encouraged to bring unused or unwanted medications to be disposed of properly.
For those who are registered for the forum, check-in begins at 2:30 p.m.

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