National News

TN health professionals gather to discuss opioid crisis

Posted November 13, 2017 4:22 p.m. EST

— Tennessee health professionals and government officials are working to combat the opioid epidemic and a national emergency.

Hundreds gathered in Brentwood on Monday for the "Turning the Tide" summit.

The commissioner of the Tennessee Health Department says although the state has made strides in decreasing opioid prescriptions, deaths are still on the rise, and the epidemic is changing.

"At root, we're talking about a disease, not a moral failure. We're talking about people who have substance use disorder. We're talking about people. All of us are vulnerable to substance use disorder of a variety of types. It's part of the human condition," said Commissioner John Dreyzehner.

Dreyzehner said he shared the state's clear plan for moving forward with the health care providers at the summit and that it's been successful in other areas.