opioids | Nashville Public Radio


Blake Farmer / WPLN

State Senator Shane Reeves of Murfreesboro says he wasn’t surprised to see his pharmacy as the top recipient of opioids in Tennessee — more than double the next highest pharmacy in the state according to a Washington Post database.

Over a six year period, more than 45 million pain pills passed through what is now named Twelve Stone Health Partners. But Reeves also rejects that his business contributed to the opioid epidemic.

Blake Farmer / WPLN

The overdose crisis shows little sign of abating in Nashville. The fire department says it has administered the overdose reversal drug Narcan to 1,036 patients already this year, a 23% increase over the same point in 2018.

courtesy Tennessee Department of Health

Tennessee's health department is trying to humanize the opioid crisis. A public awareness campaign funded by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services launches Tuesday.

Blake Farmer / WPLN

Two men have been charged with second-degree murder for dealing heroin laced with fentanyl. They're accused of killing a 30-year-old from Murfreesboro as Tennessee law enforcement is increasingly turning to homicide charges stemming from overdose deaths.

Blake Farmer / WPLN

Tennessee's 1-year-old law that restricted prescribing of addictive painkillers has had unintended consequences, according to some state lawmakers. They've tweaked some parts of the opioid legislation from 2018, with the changes taking effect July 1.

courtesy VUMC

Nashville's largest hospital is launching a part-time addiction clinic, so overdose victims have somewhere close to go after the emergency room. Vanderbilt University Medical Center's new "bridge clinic" began ramping up Friday.

Blake Farmer / WPLN

Agents were already in the field making arrests this week as federal prosecutors announced the indictments of 32 medical professionals in Tennessee and 60 across the Appalachian region. They're each accused of opioid-related crimes. And this time, other government workers were also mobilized in response, looking for desperate patients.

Sergio Martínez-Beltrán / WPLN

Some prescription drugs in Tennessee may soon have to be dispensed in a lockable bottle.

Backers of the proposal, including parents of people killed due to opioid overdoses, said it would prevent teens of getting hooked on opioids.

Screenshot of Republican Convention / TN Photo Services

In public appearances and small campaign gatherings, former Governor Phil Bredesen and Congressman Marsha Blackburn have been offering a few competing ideas for dealing with the opioid crisis.

Chas Sisk / WPLN (File photo)

After months of deliberation, Tennessee is joining five other states and suing a major drug maker for its role in the opioid epidemic.

The suit against Purdue Pharma follows a lengthy investigation by the Tennessee attorney general into several drug companies and distributors.