Bringing awareness to the opioid epidemic


PIQUA — A local addiction treatment center is hoping to increase education around the opioid epidemic during National Overdose Awareness Day.

For National Overdose Awareness Day, BrightView will be holding a community resource fair on Tuesday, Aug. 31, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at their Piqua facility at 1830 W. High St.

“It’s not something that can be swept under the rug anymore like it used to be. It is there, it isn’t going away, and I just feel like it is very important for everyone to be aware that this is happening in our communities, and find ways that we can help each other get through it,” said Keitha Siler, community outreach manager at BrightView.

BrightView, which opened its doors in Piqua last June, is an outpatient addiction treatment center that combines medical treatment with psychological therapy and social services, in an effort to give patients comprehensive support needed to overcome addiction. The center offers evidence-based, outpatient addiction treatment programs to assist those seeking help to rebuild their lives without completely uprooting them.

According to the Ohio Department of Health, 4,028 people died of unintentional drug overdoses in 2019, which was a 7% increase over 2018. Miami County had 328 overdose-related deaths in 2020. In addition to offering resources and information to the community, BrightView will be placing 328 purple flags in front of the facility to remember those who were lost to addiction. BrightView will also be offering Narcan training.

“Anyone who joins us will be able to learn about BrightView and everything that we can do and ways that we can help the community with the ongoing opioid epidemic,” Siler said.

While COVID has limited the resource fair this year, Siler said that the event is still open to the public to come out and become more familiar with BrightView and the services they provide, so that they may be able to point someone in need of help in the right direction. Attendees will be able to meet the staff at BrightView and tour the facilities. BrightView treats alcohol and drug addictions across the board, and all services are outpatient; case managers and counselors are able to connect people to resources and services outside of BrightView that they know the patient needs, but they can’t provide.

“If someone needs an intensive inpatient stay to get them started, we can refer them and get them over to an agency that can get them on the right track. Once they’re discharged from an inpatient facility, they can come to us and complete the outpatient portion,” Siler said.

Each patient at BrightView has access to a nurse practitioner, the medical director, their own case manager and their own counselor. Patients can also come to BrightView for case management and counseling, without needing the medical side of treatment. Additionally, Siler said BrightView accepts non-insured patients and will work with them to get them the help and treatment they need.

“They do not get turned away. We will still treat you and we will still see you, whether you have insurance or not. That is a large reason why our homeless population, as well as anyone else who does not have insurance coverage, feels they cannot get help, is because they don’t have the insurance. We will still see them,” Siler said.

Outside of National Overdose Awareness Day, Siler said that a good way for community members to get involved with raising awareness is joining coalitions and attending meetings to get more information and knowledge about the disease of addiction.

BrightView is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and walk-in appointments are open from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.

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