Recent News

Fentanyl test strips detect deadly synthetic opioid in drug supply (Washington Times)

Public health advocates and officials are at odds over programs that allow drug users to bring in their illicit drugs to test them for a deadly synthetic opioid.

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Bmore Healthy Newsletter: May 11, 2018

Click here to read the 5/11/18 newsletter.

In this issue: 

  • Note from the Commissioner
  • WJZ-TV: Dr. Wen Participates in Second “Standing Together” Town Hall 
  • Dr. Wen Speaks at The Atlantic: Justice in America Event in Washington, D.C. 
  • Dr. Wen Joins Advocates to Request Federal Government Take Action to Lower the Price of Naloxone 
  • Dr. Wen Provides Introductory Remarks at Nicholas Kristof’s “Building a Fairer Society” Lecture
  • & More

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Healthwatch with Dr. Leana Wen: Heart Disease, Opioids, Synthetic Weed Warnings (WYPR)

In this edition of Dr. Wen's regular Healthwatch segment on WYPR's Midday with Tom Hall, she gives tips for heart health, provides and update on the City's teen pregnancy prevention lawsuit against the Trump administration, and warns against the danger of synthetic cannabis. 

Listen here.

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Note From The Commissioner: Treating Addiction in our Hospitals

Last week, Mayor Catherine E. Pugh and I convened all 11 hospitals in Baltimore to announce our partnership to combat the opioid epidemic. Addiction is a disease. Treatment for it cannot be siloed and stigmatized.

Baltimore City hospitals have done exceptional work already. Nearly all of our City’s ERs offer medication-assisted treatment on demand and peer recovery specialists, something true of no other major city in America. Through my standing order for naloxone, more than 36,000 residents have been trained to use the antidote medication, and these residents have saved more than 1,900 lives. Law enforcement and health officials teamed up to start a program that allows residents arrested for low-level drug offenses the opportunity to choose treatment and case management instead of prosecution. In March, we announced the opening of our Stabilization Center, a first-of-its-kind 24/7 urgent care facility dedicated to issues of addiction and mental health.

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Narcan saved me from an opioid overdose. President Trump should make this drug cheaper. (USA Today)

In his op-ed, Communities United Activist Perry Hopkins tells his story of being revived by Narcan, and explains the need for naloxone to be cheaper, and what the federal government can do about it. 

Read the entire story.

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More judges order administration to restore pregnancy prevention funds (Salon)

Two more federal judges have ordered the Trump administration to restore funding for teen pregnancy prevention programs that were abruptly eliminated. 

U.S. District Judge Catherine C. Blake ruled Wednesday that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ decision was “arbitrary and capricious” when it axed $5 million in funding for the city of Baltimore and the Baltimore nonprofit Healthy Teen Network.

Read the entire story.

Leana Wen

After the Fall

Baltimore is betting on data mapping to curb the leading cause of fatal injuries among older adults.

The mere act of falling down leads to tens of thousands of deaths among adults 65 and over every year in the U.S., and even more hospitalizations. In Baltimore, where there are many older homes and row houses with steep staircases, falls leading to an emergency room visit occur more frequently than in the rest of Maryland on average, and the city's recently launched fall-reduction strategy aims to utilize hospital data to quickly identify neighborhoods – and even exact locations – where falls are most frequent.

Read the entire story.

Leana Wen

From Football to Rocket Science: Meet the Young People Changing the World in 2018 (Modern Diplomacy)

One hundred of the world’s most promising artists, business leaders, public servants, social entrepreneurs and technologists under the age of 40 have been invited to join the World Economic Forum’s community of Young Global Leaders. The aim is to enable them to shape an inclusive and sustainable future for the world. 

Leana Wen is the emergency physician taking on Baltimore’s health crises as the city’s Commissioner of Health. As the head of one of America’s most experimental health departments, she tackles everything from the city’s crippling drug abuse problem to high infant mortality.

Read the entire story.

Leana Wen

Baltimore SHARP Program Is One Solution To Opioid Epidemic (WJZ)

As quickly as the opioid epidemic claims lives in Baltimore, treatment programs are fighting back. That was the topic of WJZ’s Town Hall Tuesday: Searching for Solutions to the Opioid Epidemic.

“Here in Baltimore City, we focus first and foremost on saving lives. If someone is dying right now, we have to save their life in order for there to be a better tomorrow,” Baltimore Health Commissioner Dr. Leana Wen said.

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Leana Wen

AIDS Walk & Run Baltimore raises $80,000 for Chase Brexton’s HIV/AIDS services (Metro Weekly)

The 2018 AIDS Walk & Run Baltimore raised more than $80,000 to support Chase Brexton Health Care’s HIV/AIDS prevention, outreach, and testing services.

Chase Brexton Health Care President and CEO Patrick Mutch and Baltimore City Health Department Commissioner Jennifer Martin gave brief remarks at the event, which was emceed by Chardelle Moore of FOX 5 Baltimore. 

Read the entire story.

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