Educating patients, providers in the age of the opioid epidemic
The number of people dying from overdoses of prescription and illicit opioids has doubled. The Centers for Disease Control reports more than 42,000 people died in 2016. In hopes of curtailing further escalation of the opioid epidemic, the U.S. surgeon general issued an advisory in April recommending that more Americans carry the opioid overdose-reversing drug, naloxone. Months before the warning, a team of physician assistant graduate students at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis worked on an innovative research project to educate people and providers how to react when an overdose is anticipated. The experience tested their knowledge and grew their communication skills.