Community response teams to help combat opioid crisis

DOVER, Del. – City officials in Dover are stepping up efforts to save people from overdosing on opioids.

Earlier this month, an organization called Health Management Associates in partnership with the Department of Health showed officials how bad the issue has gotten.

“It lists my city as having a number of hotspots for opioid and overdose activity,” said the City of Dover Mayor Robin R. Christiansen.

In response the city is creating community response teams to help address this issue.

“Medical professionals, counselors, the faith community, volunteers, bring them all together and respond within the community,” said Councilman David Anderson.

According to officials, community advocates will work with the Division of Public Health to provide more resources to families battling opioids sooner rather than later.

“Those teams can kind of assess and try to talk to people that’s going through addiction that there’s help out there, that there is hope,” said the NorthNode Group Executive Director Alex Cropper.

Members of the NorthNode Group, a local substance abuse facility, are joining in the fight. They will be working closely with the city to make these response teams a reality.

“If you can convince them that change is possible and that you have an avenue to get them in treatment at that very time, I think it’s very crucial,” said Cropper, “So, being accessible is what’s going to help make a difference.”

Health Management Associates are expected to recruit people in the coming months to start creating community response teams in Dover and Kent County.

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