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New KET forum addresses latest treatments, what’s working in Kentucky’s opioid crisis


New KET forum addresses latest treatments, what’s working in Kentucky’s opioid crisis

For Release: 07/19/18 12:00 PM

Despite increasing state and federal attention to the problem of opioid addiction, deaths from overdoses continue to rise. In KET’s second forum focusing on the opioid epidemic, communities and organizations across the state have found ways to combat this out-of-control problem.

Disrupting the Opioid Epidemic: A KET Forum, hosted by Renee Shaw, features a panel of experts, a live studio audience and three feature segments. The program airs Monday, July 30 at 8/7 pm on KET.

Scheduled panelists are:

  • Van Ingram, executive director of the Kentucky Office of Drug Control Policy;
  • Allen Brenzel, MD, MBA, medical/clinical director for the Kentucky Department for Behavioral Health, Developmental & Intellectual Disabilities;
  • Jennifer Hancock, president and CEO of Volunteers of American Mid-States;
  • And Russell Coleman, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Kentucky.

Additional scheduled guests include:

David and Kayla Greene, founders of the Domonique Jason Greene Foundation. Their son Dominique lost his life to a heroin overdose.

Scott Hesseltine, MBA, LCADC, vice president of addiction services at Centerstone, one of the nation’s largest not-for-profit providers of community-based behavioral health care.

Phillip K. Chang, MD, FACS, chief medical officer at UK HealthCare.

And Ardis D. Hoven, MD, infectious disease specialist at the Kentucky Department for Public Health.

Segment features include:

The Harm Reduction Pharmacy Van, a partnership between the Kentucky Pharmacists Association and the Kentucky Department for Public Health, travels to local communities to deliver free naloxone, along with training on how to use it. This segment visits the Jessamine County Health Department to see the van in action.

At the Alexandria Police Department in Campbell County, a police social worker, along with volunteer “angels,” reaches out to people who have recently overdosed to help them get into treatment and then find supportive housing, employment and other vital services after treatment.

Students from Ashland Middle School in Boyd County invented a device that helps people pick up discarded heroin needles without the risk of skin puncture. The students won a national award from Samsung with a $150K prize for their school.

In the past two years, KET has produced almost 30 programs on the issue as part of its nationally recognized Inside Opioid Addiction initiative.

KET is Kentucky’s largest classroom, where learning comes to life for more than one million people each week via television, online and mobile. Learn more about Kentucky’s preeminent public media organization at, on Twitter @KET and at


Todd Piccirilli
Senior Director, Marketing and Communications