The widespread abuse of opioid drugs, including prescription painkillers heroin and other highly addictive drugs are in the headlines on a daily basis. In Worcester County alone there were 148 reported deaths from opioid overdoses in 2016, and there is no indication that trend is slowing down. And for every overdose, there are many more daily users getting by day-to- day with their addiction. There is no doubt this crisis is having an impact on the workforce and in the workplace. But are employers prepared to recognize the problem, or know where to go for help?
According to some studies, opioid abuse is costing employers billions of dollars from absenteeism, workplace injuries and lack of productivity. Despite the breadth and seriousness of this crisis, most employers lack a true understanding of how it is having an impact on some of their employees, their families, and the company’s bottom line.
This special forum will give employers an overview of what progress the city, the region and the state have made in tackling the crisis, and what challenges still lie ahead one year after signing the State’s opioid legislation. Our panel of industry experts and business executives will also provide key information on the proactive role employers can take in mitigating the effect of addiction at their companies, and how to better spot the problem and develop an action plan.This forum will address several sides of the issue, including:
Assessing current workplace policies
How to partner effectively with benefit providers to improve engagement and utilization and guide employees to the right information and the right care.
Prioritizing and delivering on education efforts.