ODMAP Is A Massive Investment To Help Addicts In Jamestown
New buildings are a big, shiny way to show that Chautauqua County is taking steps to battle the opioid epidemic.
While necessary, other steps can have a big impact, too. Take, for example, the ODMAP program that links law enforcement and emergency responders, brings more information about fatal and non-fatal overdoses to health officials and can quickly get those who may be ready for help with their addiction into a recovery program. The Overdose Detection Mapping Application Program was developed and is operated by the Washington/Baltimore High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Program. The program is available nationwide, free of charge to public officials who aim to gather better data on fatal and non-fatal overdoses in their communities, and to design meaningful response plans for citizens in need.
ODMAP’s creators intended for it to result in better collaboration between public health agencies responding to the opioid crisis, and law enforcement agencies who frequently encounter and respond to overdose events in their communities.
For the pilot project in Chautauqua County, the process begins when an officer of the Jamestown Police Department enters basic information about the overdose (fatal/non-fatal status, doses of Narcan given, and suspected drug) into the mobile-friendly ODMAP website. County Health and Human Services Department staff monitor the map daily for overdoses that occur in Jamestown and request information about the overdose from the police department. When contacted by the county, the Mental Health Association deploys a peer recovery coach to connect with the person and offer services as well as a care package.
Getting someone who has an overdose in touch with a peer offers a connection to services at the Mental Health Association and other agencies throughout the community, including providers of medications for addiction treatment. Care packages being distributed are a token of support for those who are interested in getting involved with the Mental Health Association and for those who are not quite ready to make a change. The packages and their contents serve as a reminder that help is available and how they can access help. The package includes information about local recovery resources, education about recovery, chap stick, and a healthy snack.
Several law enforcement and emergency response agencies are on board with the ODMAP effort, and work is ongoing to obtain full participation across the county. The Chautauqua County Sheriff’s Department, the Jamestown Police Department, the Lakewood-Busti Police Department, and Alstar Ambulance Services were a few of the early adopters in the county.
It takes an incredible amount of cooperation among many different agencies to make a program like ODMAP a reality. If it works in the Jamestown area, there are plans to make the program countywide. ODMAP isn’t millions of dollars of investment in a new building, but it is a massive investment in the way the Jamestown area can help addicts and in information gathering to help plan the next steps the county will take to help those addicted to opioids.