Has progress been made in battling the opioid epidemic?

An aerial view of the Hudson River with a bridge crossing it

An aerial view of the Hudson River with a bridge crossing it Shutterstcok

Seniors were keeping it cool at the Carter Burden Network during the heatwave. The Leonard Covello Senior Center in East Harlem, an official city cooling center, had more than just air conditioning to offer older folks. There was Spanish-language karaoke and English to learn for Mandarin-speaking seniors who came by on July 19. Classes were also offered on printmaking, ceramics, sewing and other subjects, according to a press release. 


Care for The Homeless is getting a $31.3 million contract with the New York City Department of Homeless Services. The four-year deal will fund the development of a shelter for single adults at 427-429 West 52nd Street in Manhattan through June 2023, according to the City Record. The department has also made a $863,899.66 deal to have New York State Industries for the Disabled provide janitorial services for a department warehouse in central Brooklyn.


The Urban Resource Institute recently graduated 35 domestic violence survivors from a work training program on July 17. Financial abuse can play a role in domestic violence by limiting victims’ independence. The Working Internship Network aims to help people overcome this problem by providing them with resume help, job interview coaching, and other professional development, according to a press release. Nearly 300 people have participated in the program over the last two decades. 


Two executives have joined the Institute For Community Living. Ellen Tabor will be the new associate chief medical officer. She has previously worked as chair of psychiatry at Kingsbrook Jewish Medical Center and as the medical director of adult inpatient service at Kings County Hospital, according to a press release. Fellow physician Edward Tabasky will be the medical director for the East New York Health Hub, which is a part of ICL. He recently completed the Columbia University Public Psychiatry Program, where he was placed with ICL on the East Brooklyn ACT team and at Highland Park Center.


A new analysis examines whether progress has been made in battling the opioid epidemic. New data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggest that overdose deaths declined 5% from 2017 to 2018. A new post on the website of the Rockefeller Institute of Government, though, urges cautious optimism about making progress against opioid addiction. Additionally, the number of overall deaths from drugs in 2018 was higher than either 2016 or the year before.

“The 2018 numbers also represent only a single data point, and it’s unclear whether the trend will continue. In 2012, for example, drug overdose deaths appeared to level off, increasing less than half a percentage point from 2011,” reads the analysis. “Yet overdose deaths jumped nearly 6 percentage points the following year, from 41,502 in 2012 to 43,982 in 2013.”