Tampa Bay News : Curtailing prescription drug abuse, where to get help and information.

Where to get help and information

Editor’s note: This is the third segment in a three-part series on efforts to curtail prescription drug abuse in the county.

  • Compiled by SUZETTE PORTER 

People fighting an addiction to prescription drugs can find help from a variety of sources. From governmental agencies to nonprofit organizations, assistance is available. Tampa Bay Newspapers put together a list of places that have resources to help addicts and their families. Don’t fight the battle alone.

2-1-1 Tampa Bay Cares Inc.

This organization provides 2-1-1 telephone services to Pinellas, Citrus, Hernando, Lake and Sumter Counties in Florida 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Among the many services offered is access to physical and mental health resources: medical information lines, crisis intervention services, support groups, counseling, drug and alcohol intervention, rehabilitation, health insurance programs, Medicaid and Medicare, maternal health, children’s health insurance programs.

Call 211, email info@211tampabay.org, visit www.211tampabay.org, or connect via live chat on the website, available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Operation Parental Awareness and Responsibility

This nonprofit organization provides integrated addiction and mental health services at sites in Broward, Pinellas, Pasco, Lee and Manatee counties and recently started an adult outpatient program to help with substance abuse and/or mental health issues, which focuses on recovery and preventing relapse.

Operation Par serves more than 13,000 individuals a year in intervention and treatment services and another 40,000 participate annually in Operation PAR’s messages of substance abuse awareness, education, prevention, research and information and referrals. Services are provided on a sliding fee scale based on income.

Call the 24-hour hotline at 1-888-727-6398 or visit operationpar.org.

NOPE, Pinellas Chapter Narcotic Overdose Prevention and Education Task Force, Pinellas County chapter.

Headed up by parents who have lost children to unintentional drug overdose, members bring their message to schools and community groups. They also organize public events to heighten awareness and support family and friends who have lost loved ones to drug abuse.

For more information, visit www.nopetaskforce.org/chapter-pinellas.php.

LiveFree!, Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition of Pinellas County

LiveFree! addresses underage and binge drinking and other drug use among youth and young adults in Pinellas County.

Call 813-503-5658, email livefree@operpar.org or visit www.pinellascoalition.com.

Pinellas County Health Department

Call 824-6900 or visit www.pinellashealth.com

Florida Department of Health

Visit www.floridashealth.com

Office of National Drug Control Policy

Call 1-800-788-2800 or visit www.theantidrug.com

Lock Your Meds

National multi-media campaign, with support materials for outreach

Visit www.lockyourmeds.org