Ocean County District Attorney Joins Opioid Prescribing Initiative

Bradley D. Billhimer
Ocean County Attorney

Ocean County Attorney’s Office Strengthens Commitment to Address State-Wide Opioid Epidemic by Partnering with the Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey to Provide Free Prescribing Training of opioids to county health care providers.

The attorney’s office will award 500 scholarships to Ocean County prescribers to participate in PDFNJ’s continuing education webinar, “Do No Harm: Exploring Strategies for Safer Prescription of Opioids.” Ocean County Attorney Bradley Billhimer and his office are the first New Jersey attorney’s office to collaborate to provide continuing education to local prescribers.

The webinar features medical, law enforcement and legal experts discussing the impact of the opioid epidemic in New Jersey and providing information on how to prescribe opioids to patients safely and responsible. It also meets New Jersey’s requirement that prescribers receive one hour of continuing education on prescription opioids to renew their licenses.

“Prosecutor Billhimer and the Ocean County District Attorney’s Office have been a tremendous partner in efforts to address the opioid epidemic in New Jersey,” said PDFNJ Executive Director Angelo Valente. “From its innovative recovery programs to engaging the business community, the prosecutor’s office has established itself as a leader in this fight. Now, by making prescriber training more accessible to county providers, the office is providing a life-saving prevention service that will have a positive impact on county residents.

“The Drug Free New Jersey Partnership has been a trusted ally in our ongoing battle against opioid abuse,” said Billhimer. “We are always on the lookout for opportunities to leverage our opioid education and addiction prevention resources. This unique approach, providing continuing medical education to prescribers, is a natural intersection for law enforcement and the medical community. This collaborative approach is essential in our seemingly endless battle against opioid abuse. “

In June 2019, PDFNJ and Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey launched the webinar, which provided vital information for responsible prescribing practices that protect patients from opioid abuse and dependence. The knowledge of the course has benefited approximately 2.6 million patients.

“Educating healthcare professionals about the risks and appropriate ways to manage pain and prescribe opioids is crucial in addressing the opioid epidemic facing our state and our country,” said Valente. “Healthcare professionals in New Jersey are receiving better training in prescribing practices through this webinar, and this knowledge has helped them make the best decisions for their patients. “

The webinar is specially designed for healthcare professionals including MDs, Doctors of Osteopathic Medicine, Dentists, Nurse Practitioners, Physician Assistants, Nurses, Residents, Fellows, and Medical Students. The accredited program can be accessed through the KnockOutOpioidAbuse.DrugFreeNJ.org/NJSafeRx website.

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