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Rural York County Opioid Consortium to Hold Community Forum

February 05, 2019

The Rural York County Opioid Consortium will be hosting an Opioid Community Forum on Thursday, February 28 from 5-7 pm at the Sanford High School. This event is free and open to all York County residents.

  • Community Focus Groups, 5-6 pm: Community members are invited to participate in an open discussion facilitated by USM’s Muskie School of Public Service to gather input on barriers and gaps in the community for opioid treatment access, recovery, and prevention in rural York County.  The information will be used to develop strategies to improve services Wells, Kennebunk, Kennebunkport, Waterboro, Alfred, Sanford, Springvale, Parsonsfield, and Newfield.
  • Opioid Overdose Recognition and Naloxone Training, 6-7 pm: Lizzy Garnatz, an experienced Community Health Promotion Specialist with the City of Portland’s Public Health Division will provide a free training on how to recognize an opioid overdose and use Naloxone, a lifesaving medication.  Lizzy oversees the daily operations of the Portland Needle Exchange Program and has helped to implement both a community sharps box campaign and a Naloxone distribution protocol over the last few years.  Jessika Morin, MD, Medical Director of the SMHC Integrated Medication-Assisted Treatment Program, will be available to answer questions about accessing Naloxone.

Free food and drinks will be provided as well as raffles for gift cards donated by Shain’s of Maine, Sanford House of Pizza, Domino’s, Smitty’s Sanford Cinema and Pub, and Amazon gift cards.

The forum will take place at the Agora Presentation Area at Sanford High School, 100 Alumni Blvd, in Sanford. Attendees should use the main entrance. Snow date is Tuesday, March 5. To register, call 207-283-7234 or email

About the Rural York County Opioid Consortium
The Rural York County Opioid Consortium membership includes SMHC, Maine Behavioral Healthcare, Nasson Health Care (affiliated with York County Community Action Corporation), Frannie Peabody Center, the Kennebunk Police Department, York Hospital, North East Mobile Health Services, Day One and Strategies for a Stronger Sanford.

The consortium is overseeing the work for the $200,000 Rural Communities Opioid Response Program-Planning grant through the Health Resources & Services Administration. The purpose of this grant is to support treatment for and prevention of substance use disorder, including opioid use disorder, in rural counties at the highest risk for substance use disorder.

This project is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of an award totaling $200,000. The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by HRSA, HHS or the U.S. Government.

About Southern Maine Health Care
Southern Maine Health Care (SMHC) is a national award-winning healthcare organization with a non-profit mission “to improve the health and health care of the communities we serve.”SMHC includes a full service, acute care medical center in Biddeford, with York County’s only inpatient mental health unit. Emergency care, surgical services and diagnostic and therapy services are available at SMHC’s Medical Centers in Biddeford and Sanford. SMHC offers primary care and multi-specialty physician services, diagnostic and therapy services and Walk-In Care centers in York County communities including Biddeford, Kennebunk, Saco, Sanford and Waterboro. SMHC is Joint Commission accredited and has been recognized for quality excellence by numerous outside organizations. SMHC is part of the MaineHealth system, a growing family of health care services in northern New England. To learn more, visit

Media Contact:
Allison Kenty
Director, Communications & Public Affairs
(207) 283-7233

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