Sept. 29, 2017: CDC Announces Rx Awareness Campaign

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced the launch of Rx Awareness, a communication campaign featuring real-life accounts of people recovering from opioid use disorder and people who have lost loved ones to prescription opioid overdose.

According to CDC, the campaign’s focus is to increase awareness and knowledge about the risks of prescription opioids with a particular focus on stopping inappropriate use. According to Health and Human Services’ Secretary Tom Price, MD, “The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is committed to using evidence-based methods to communicate targeted messages about the opioid crisis and prevent addiction and misuse in every way we can.”

Campaign materials include videos, audio ads, social media ads, internet banners, web graphics, billboards and posters highlighting the importance of knowing the risks associated with prescription opioids to prevent misuse and overdose. Beginning today, campaign ads will run for 14 weeks in Ohio, Kentucky, Massachusetts and New Mexico. Broader release is expected in additional states funded through CDC’s Prescription Drug Overdose: Prevention for States and Data-Driven Prevention Initiative programs.

According to CDC, every day in the United States, more than 1,000 people are treated in emergency departments for misusing prescription opioids – and more than 40 people die from prescription opioid overdoses. Among new heroin users, approximately three out of four report having misused prescription opioids before using heroin. In 2015, 12.5 million people misused prescription opioids.