Colorado launches a nearly $1.8 million campaign to end stigma around opioid addiction |

Colorado launches a nearly $1.8 million campaign to end stigma around opioid addiction

In 2017, at least 357 people died of an overdose related to prescription opioids in Colorado

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper speaks at the launch of the state’s “Lift the Label” campaign on May 14, 2018. The program is aimed at reducing stigma around opioid addiction in an effort to encourage those in need to seek help. Hickenlooper was standing before an installation of empty prescription bottles representing the more than 42,000 people who died of opioid overdoses in 2016.
Jesse Paul/The Denver Post

Colorado launched a nearly $1.8 million public awareness campaign Monday aimed at ending the stigma around opioid addiction, with the hopes of encouraging more people to seek treatment.

“We want people to know if they are ready to seek help, we’ve got their back,” said Reggie Bicha, who leads the Colorado Department of Human Services, as he stood before an installation recognizing the more than 42,000 people in the U.S. who died of opioid overdoses in 2016.

“Help is available, and you’re not alone,” he added.

The “Lift the Label” campaign will include print, television and digital advertisements designed to educate the public about opioid dependency through stories of addiction and recovery in Colorado. They will “provide a message of hope from people who used to feel hopeless,” according to a news release.

Robert Werthwein, who leads the Department of Human Service’s Office of Behavioral Health, said the hope is that the effort will complement work to increase treatment options for those suffering through addiction.

Read the full story online from The Denver Post.

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