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Department of Medicine hosts Grand Rounds to discuss America's opioid epidemic

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Jennifer Johnson

Emory University Department of Medicine physicians, fellows, residents and faculty will gather in Emory University Hospital auditorium on Sept. 5 from noon – 1 p.m. for a discussion with leading public health, law enforcement and clinical experts on America's opioid epidemic.

The lecture, "The Opioid Epidemic: A National Emergency," is the first Emory Department of Medicine Grand Rounds event of the academic year. Grand rounds are lectures designed to keep doctors and other health care professionals informed on medical challenges and advances that may fall outside their core practice.

The opioid epidemic, or opioid crisis, is the rapid increase in the use of prescription and non-prescription opioid drugs in North America in the 2010s. The American Society of Addiction Medicine estimates that nearly two million Americans are addicted to prescription opioids, and an additional 600,000 Americans are addicted to heroin.

According to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, drug overdose deaths are the leading cause of injury death in the United States, surpassing deaths from both car accidents and guns.

"Make no mistake, this is an epidemic," says presenter Carlos del Rio, MD, chair of the Department of Global Health in Emory's Rollins School of Public Health. "Opioid addiction is killing almost 100 people every single day, and that's just in the United States. We're going to talk about how the epidemic got started, what it means for our future and what we can do to try to stop it."

Event speakers include: Carlos del Rio, MD; Rita Noonan, PhD, chief of the Health Systems & Trauma Systems Branch at the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention; and Jack Killorin, director of the Atlanta-Carolinas High Intensity Drug-Trafficking Area. All Emory University faculty, staff and students are invited to attend.

About Grand Rounds

Emory Department of Medicine Grand Rounds are held in the Emory University Hospital auditorium (2E) every Tuesday from noon - 1 p.m. Medicine Grand Rounds are free and open to the public unless otherwise specified.

Recordings of past presentations are available at Contact for more information.

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