A Note from Regional Health Commission CEO

31 October 2012

Thank you for taking the time to visit this site. We hope it proves useful to you and our community. At the urging of many of our community members, the St. Louis Regional Health Commission (RHC) has prioritized heroin usage as key health issue for the St. Louis area. As a result, the RHC partnered with Nine Network and other community leaders to bring you this Regional Heroin Response resource hub.

Recent advances in the production of heroin have made the drug more potent, more addictive, able to be ingested without the use of needles, and cheap ($10-$20 per capsule).  Heroin is a highly addictive opioid derived from morphine, with minimal usage needed to develop powerful addiction.  In St. Louis, heroin use is not focused on income, race, gender or geography, with an alarming rise in youth over the past 2 years.   Hundreds of people from the St. Louis region over the past several years have died prematurely from a heroin overdose. In addition to the significant health consequences of heroin usage, we hear of overburdened emergency rooms, fire and police departments, schools, and social service providers that are struggling every day to meet the challenges presented by this rising epidemic.

The purpose of this collaborative is twofold: 1) to share information with you about heroin addiction and its effect on individuals, families, and our community, and 2) to connect those in need with treatment and prevention resources in the community.

This effort builds on the work of many other partners that are addressing the heroin issue, including the United Way’s Regional Heroin Response team, St. Louis City and County law enforcement,  the State of Missouri’s Department of Alcohol & Drug Abuse, the NCADA (National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse, St. Louis Area), the St. Louis County Children’s fund, and many other important community partners and providers.  We thank all who have all come together to address this issue collaboratively in our community, and are hopeful that together we can dramatically reduce the impacts of this drug abuse in our region.

We’d like to hear what you think. Let us know how this site can better serve you.   We thank you for your time and attention to this critical issue facing our region.

Robert Fruend, Jr.
CEO, St. Louis Regional Health Commission

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Resources for Help

Need help? Call National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse, 314-962-3456
Not-Even-Once is a campaign aimed at teens and their parents to raise awareness of the effects and consequences of Heroin.

In crisis or need to speak to a clinician immediately? Call Behavioral Health Response, 314-469-6644 or 1-800-811-4760. BHR is a professionally staffed, accredited 24/7 clinical call center.

Our Region’s Health

The Nine Network is working in partnership with organizations across our region to build a healthy community by addressing critical issues and connecting people with the resources and information they need.


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