ARIZONA OPIOID BY THE NUMBERS
June 2017 — January 2018
Died of a suspected opiod overdose
suffered a suspected opioid overdose
babies born addicted
reported overdoses in Maricopa County
reported overdoses in Pima County
Pain is the #1 reported symptom after a brain injury.
of patients hospitalized with a TBI receive an opioid prescription
of heroin users in treatment started with painkillers
Opioid misuse can cause brain injury — Brain Injury can lead to opioid addiction
NEWS & UPDATES
While great strides have been made in preventing some common causes of brain injury, other causes have gone shrouded in mystery and stigma. This is particularly so when it comes to brain injuries from opioid overdoses, which have increased during the COVID-19 global pandemic.
BIAAZ aims to raise awareness, prevent future brain injuries from substance misuse, and help those who struggle with addiction after brain injury to find recovery.
With all this well-deserved attention about the dangers of opioids, there is another side to the story that should not be discounted. Opioids can also be beneficial for many patients as long as they are carefully prescribed and monitored.
This is a profile of one of the many professionals the BIAAZ State Opioid Response Team works with, Samantha Eagle.
State Opioid Response Team
Interpersonal Violence Liaison
Janice comes to the BIAAZ with 15+ years of experience in the field of brain injury programs and services. Her previous work with the Minnesota Brain Injury Alliance (MNBIA) involved the development of fee-for-service presentations and training workshops on Brain Injury Basics, as well as the implementation of a phone-based mentor program, which continues to help brain injury survivors and their families who are struggling to connect with someone who “gets it.” Her training in Trauma Awareness and Resiliency has also allowed her to work extensively with underserved communities such as Native Americans and persons of color through both a brain injury and trauma-informed lens.
Her desire for a warmer climate brought Janice to Arizona, where she decided to put her brain injury background to good use by joining the BIAAZ State Opioid Response team in January of 2020. She looks forward to providing statewide training and education programs for survivors of brain injury, their families, and allied professionals, as well as raising awareness for the Opioid Epidemic as a cause and effect of brain injury.
Veteran and Family Navigator
Luke is a former Sergeant of the U.S. Army and served in Operation Desert Storm. He is a member of the American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars, and Disabled American Veterans. As part of the Brain Injury Alliance of Arizona’s State Opioid Response team, Luke has taken on the role of Veteran and Family Services Navigator. His training includes certification as a Peer Support Specialist, which he utilizes to assist Veterans who have sustained any type of brain injury and are battling substance use disorders to overcome their challenges and continue on towards a fulfilling life. Luke is proud of the amazing progress he has witnessed so far, and looks forward to continuing his work and support of Arizona’s heroes.
Certified Recovery Support Specialist — Southern Arizona Outreach Coordinator
Liz started at BIAAZ in November 2019 in Phoenix, but soon relocated to Tucson to serve as our Southern Arizona Outreach Coordinator. She is responsible for events and outreach all across the lower part of the state.
The nonprofit sector is a brand new journey for Liz, but she is already finding great purpose and fulfillment in working to support survivors of brain injury and their families. Since joining us, she has completed courses in TBI, Person Centered Planning, Opioid Overdose Response, Human Subject Research and Motivational Interviewing. Liz is also a member of our new State Opioid Response Team, tasked with shining a light on the connections between brain injury and the opioid epidemic. Liz is passionate about helping brain injury survivors who struggle with addiction, and hopes to raise awareness about the dangers of brain injury due to opioid overdose.