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Van Ingram, Executive Director


Van Ingram is the Executive Director for the Kentucky Office of Drug Control Policy.  Van joined ODCP in November 2004, shortly after it was created with the mission of coordinating Kentucky’s substance abuse efforts in enforcement, treatment and prevention/education.

Van served with the Maysville Kentucky Police Department for more than 23 years, the last six as Chief of Police.  He is a former President of the Kentucky Association of Chiefs of Police, and was named “Kentucky Chief of the Year” in 2001.  He is the 2004 recipient of the Governor’s Award for Outstanding Contribution to Law Enforcement, as well as, the Melvin Shein Award for distinguished service to Kentucky law enforcement.

Van is a certified law enforcement instructor and has trained officers across the state on a variety of topics, including community oriented policing, case management, and “Kentucky Substance Abuse Issues” for Chiefs, Sheriff’s and command staff. He is a frequent speaker on a variety of substance abuse issues both in Kentucky and nationally.

To contact Van, you can do so by emailing him at Van.Ingram@ky.gov

2013 KY ODCP Overdose Fatality Report


2013 Overdose Fatality Report


2013 Overdose Statistics by County


Substance abuse, particularly the diversion and abuse of prescription drugs, is one of the most critical public health and safety issues facing Kentucky. Over the past decade, the number of Kentuckians who die from drug overdoses has steadily climbed to more than 1,000 each year, exacting a devastating toll on families, communities, social services and economic stability and growth.

In an effort to reverse the trend, the Commonwealth has implemented a number of program and policy initiatives, including but not limited to the statewide use of prescription drug monitoring programs, expanded availability of substance abuse treatment opportunities, and the enactment of laws (House Bill 1 from the 2012 Special Session and House Bill 217 from the 2013 Regular Session) specifically addressing the availablity of prescription medications.

HB 1 mandates that the Office of Drug Control Policy, in cooperation with the Kentucky Medical Examiners Office, prepare and publish an annual public report to the Secretary of the Justice and Public Safety Cabinet to include:

(1) The number of drug-related deaths;

(2) The decedent's age, race, and gender but not his or her name or address;

(3) The counties in which those deaths occurred;

(4) The scientific, trade, or generic names of the drugs involved; and

(5) The method by which the drugs were obtained, when available.

This report was compiled utilizing data from the Kentucky Medical Examiners Office, the Kentucky Injury Prevention & Research Council, and the Kentucky Office of Vital Statistics.

Highlights of the 2013 findings include:

· Kentucky overdose fatalities stayed relatively steady in 2013. Overdose deaths in Kentucky regardless of the residency of the decedent numbered 1007 as tabulated by July 2014, compared to 1004 overdose deaths counted in the 2012 report.

· Autopsied overdose deaths attributed to the use of heroin increased. Of the 722 deaths autopsied by the Kentucky Medical Examiner last year that were determined to be from a drug overdose, 230, or 31.9 percent, were attributed to heroin, compared to 143, or 19.6 percent, in 2012.

· Jefferson County had the most overdose deaths of any county, with 191.

· The largest increase in overdose fatalities occurred in Fayette County, with 86 deaths in 2013 compared to 74 in 2012.

· The largest decrease occurred in Campbell County, with 22 fewer fatalities in 2013 than 2012 (33 versus 55, respectively). Other counties with significant declines in 2013 include Pike (12 fewer), Clark (10 fewer), and Madison (10 fewer).

· Overdose deaths in many Eastern Kentucky counties, when compared by 100,000 population, 2013 data, showed high rates. The top 6 counties by overdose deaths per 100,000 people for 2013 are:

Bell County 93.2 per 100,000

Clinton County 49.3 per 100,000

Breathitt County 44.3 per 100,000

Floyd County 43.9 per 100,000

Perry County 42.8 per 100,00

Harlan 42.1 per 100,000


The Heroin Epidemic

There's a new drug of choice in

Kentucky: Heroin.


Heroin has had a resurgence in our nation and Kentucky is no exception. Especially hit hard have been Northern Kentucky, Louisville, and Lexington raising fears that a heroin scourge will soon ravage the entire Commonwealth.

Heroin – known by the nicknames such as Black Tar, Big H. Dog, Horse, and Puppy Chow, is a highly addictive drug derived from morphine, which is obtained from the opium poppy. Heroin can be injected, smoked in a water pipe, inhaled as smoke through a straw, or snorted as powder through the nose.

Police in Louisville and the Northern Kentucky suburbs of Cincinnati said they began seeing more heroin as early as four years ago, but it was in the last 12 months that heroin had increased dramatically.

A key driver behind the uptick in heroin abuse was the reformulation of two widely abused prescription pain drugs, making them harder to crush and snort. Drug manufacturers reformulated OxyContin in 2010 and Opana in 2011.

A growing number of young people who began abusing expensive prescription drugs are switching to heroin, which is cheaper and easier to buy. The reason may come down to basic economics: illegally obtained prescription pain killers have become more expensive and harder to get, while the price and difficulty in obtaining heroin have decreased. An 80 mg OxyContin pill runs between $60 to $100 on the street. Heroin costs about $9 a dose. Even among heavy heroin abusers, a day’s worth of the drug is cheaper than a couple hits of Oxy.

To impact the problem, the Kentucky Office of Drug Control Policy will continue to work towards increased public education, increased access to treatment, enhanced penalties for major traffickers, and greater access to naloxone.

[1] As of the date of this report the 2013 final overdose death statistics were not yet available.

Attorney General Jack Conway and the Kentucky Office of Drug Control Policy have jointly released a public service announcement (PSA) to increase awareness of heroin abuse among young people and to warn their parents of the signs.

The 30-second PSA, http://youtu.be/leznM7P2O0g, depicts a young woman in a morgue who describes how easy it has been to hide her heroin habit from her parents—that is until she becomes an overdose victim.

2013 The Partnership Attitude Tracking Study


2013 The Partnership Attitude Tracking Study

The 2013 Partnership Attitude Tracking Study (PATS), sponsored by MetLife Foundation, reports on the attitudes and behavior of teens and parents at a significant time in our culture's relationship with drugs and substance abuse.

Through this report, Partnership for Drug-Free Kids informs healthcare professionals, educators, community leaders, the news media, and families about current patterns in adolescent use and misuse of drugs and alcohol, including marijuana, performance -enhancing substances and prescription medicine.

Although the "drug landscape" is changing for parents and teens alike, its important to note that parents still have considerable influence on their teens' decision.

Key Marijuana Findings:

· Almost half of teens (44 percent) report using marijuana at least once within their lifetime; more than one in three (36 percent) report using in the past year; one in four (24 percent) report using within the past month; and 7 percent report using at least 20 times within the past month. These levels have remained basically flat over the past five years.

· More than four in ten teens (41 percent) who have used marijuana started doing so before the age of 15. This is worrisome considering that those who initiate marijuana use at a younger age are more likely to use marijuana – as well as other substances – more frequently than those who begin using at an older age.

· Hispanic and African American teens are also more likely to report using marijuana than their Caucasian counterparts (with 52 percent, 54 percent, and 39 percent indicating use, respectively).

Key Prescription Drug Abuse & Over-The-Counter Cough Medicine Findings:

· Misuse and abuse of prescription medicine continues to be the third most prevalent drug abuse behavior among teens, following use of marijuana and alcohol. Almost one in four teens (23 percent) reports abusing or misusing a prescription drug at least once in their lifetime, and one in six (16 percent) reports doing so within the past year (as depicted below). In addition, Hispanic and African-American teens are more likely to report misusing or abusing prescription drugs compared to their Caucasian counterparts (with 27 percent, 29 percent, and 20 percent indicating use, respectively).

· One notable exception was over-the-counter cough medicine. Teens reported an increase in lifetime ("ever tried") use of OTC cough medicine to get high – from 12 percent in 2012 to 15 percent in 2013. Past year and past month usage was unchanged.

Key Alcohol Findings:

· The new PATS data show that fewer teens report drinking alcohol in the past year or past month. Past-year alcohol use has declined significantly versus last year, from 57 percent in 2012 to 51 percent in 2013, and past-month alcohol use has declined gradually but significantly from 39 percent in 2009 to 35 percent in 2013.


KY Kids Recovery Grant Recipients

Attorney General Jack Conway, Gov. Steve Beshear, First Lady Jane Beshear and members of the Substance Abuse Treatment Advisory Committee today announced that 19 substance abuse treatment grant proposals from across the commonwealth have been selected for funding through the KY Kids Recovery program.

The grants will fund comprehensive adolescent substance abuse treatment programs, both expanding treatment beds at existing facilities and creating new adolescent treatment programs with the full continuum of care, including intensive outpatient and follow-up care centers.

Kentucky only has about one-tenth of the treatment beds it needs, and according to the most recent report from the Substance Abuse Health and Mental Services Administration, one in eight Kentucky high school students meet the criteria for a substance abuse disorder.

Beshear created the Substance Abuse Treatment Advisory Committee by executive order to oversee the KY Kids Recovery grant program and distribution of the settlement funds. Existing providers, new providers, community partnerships and nonprofits were eligible to apply for the KY Kids Recovery grants.

The Substance Abuse Treatment Advisory Committee submitted the 19 recommended proposals toBeshear, who approved the funding for the recipients. The programs recommended for funding are located in every region of the state and encompass all aspects of evidence-based, substance abuse services for adolescents, including prevention, outpatient counseling, intensive outpatient and residential services.

"Kentucky has been woefully lacking in comprehensive, statewide treatment options for youth who suffer from addiction and substance abuse disorders," he said. "With these grants, families will now have places to turn to for help. Early detection and intervention are the keys to solving the larger problem of substance use and abuse across Kentucky."

For the grants $17,976,992 has been recommended in funding from an available total of $19,200,000. The remaining balance will be reserved for future statewide projects and administrative oversight of recipients’ expenditures. Awards will be paid through Kentucky Housing Corporation, in compliance with state accounting procedures.

Grant recipients:

Boys & Girls Haven, Louisville, $267,084
Will expand its existing programs to offer a continuum of substance abuse treatment services for adolescents and their family members across the Jefferson and Salt River Trail regions (Anderson, Bullitt, Breckinridge, Franklin, Grayson, Hardin, Henry, LaRue, Marion, Meade, Nelson, Oldham, Shelby, Spencer, Trimble, Washington and Woodford counties). These services will build upon the agency’s expertise in providing community-based treatment.

Children’s Home of Northern Kentucky, $1.5 million
Will initiate residential substance abuse treatment services for adolescents and expand its current Champions Program (Community-Based Behavioral Health Treatment for children and youth in grades 6-12) to include more intensive substance abuse treatment services. Residential treatment will be provided on the Covington campus, serving eight northern Kentucky counties (Boone, Campbell, Carroll, Gallatin, Grant, Kenton, Owen and Pendleton counties).

Communicare, $1,200,695
Provides behavioral health services to the eight-county Lincoln Trail Area Development District (Breckinridge, Grayson, Hardin, LaRue, Marion, Meade, Nelson and Washington counties). The proposal developed will expand existing adolescent substance abuse treatment services to include residential, partial hospitalization and intensive outpatient services. Communicare currently provides prevention, intervention and outpatient substance abuse treatment services for adolescents.

Cumberland River Behavioral, $959,775
Will open a 15-bed residential facility and an intensive outpatient program for substance abuse treatment in London. These programs will utilize evidence-based screening, assessment, treatment and continuing care recovery services for youth.

Four Rivers Behavioral Health, $315,876
Will implement an adolescent substance abuse intensive outpatient treatment program in Paducah. This program is available to residents of Ballard, Calloway, Carlisle, Fulton, Graves, Hickman, Livingston, McCracken and Marshall counties.

KVC Behavioral Health Care Kentucky, $2,032,998
KVC Kentucky is designing the large-scale implementation of evidence-based, in-home services to treat adolescents with substance abuse and co-occurring disorders across 59 counties in central and eastern Kentucky.

Kentucky River Community Care, $686,165
Will provide substance abuse treatment services to adolescents in the Kentucky River Comprehensive Care area (Breathitt, Knott, Lee, Letcher, Leslie, Owsley, Perry and Wolfe counties). These services will range from initial screening through individual and group outpatient and residential treatment, where necessary.

Maryhurst, $932,928
The expansion of services to outpatient treatment reflects Maryhurst’s mission of "serving those in greatest need" and provides the opportunity to bring these services to communities such as Shively in southwest Louisville, Portland in west Louisville, and surrounding counties. The expansion of services will include screening, assessment, mobile crisis intervention, peer and family support, intensive outpatient programs, outpatient therapy and residential services.

Methodist Home of Kentucky, $542,682
This program will use evidence-based practices to support the delivery of services in Woodford, Anderson, Clark, Bourbon, Boyle, Mercer, Powell, Garrard and Jessamine counties. The program includes assessment, case management services and four levels of treatment: outpatient, intensive outpatient, relapse prevention and residential.

Mountain Comprehensive Care Center, $192,720
The center is currently conducting a SAMHSA-funded and nationally ranked Assertive Adolescent and Family Treatment Program in Floyd and Pike counties in the Big Sandy Area Development District in eastern Kentucky, and due to the level of need, proposes to expand its services to all of the Big Sandy Region, including Floyd, Johnson, Magoffin, Martin and Pike counties. The project will build the capacity of staff to provide adolescent substance abuse prevention and early detection, as well as an outpatient substance abuse treatment program in local schools.

Necco, $1,371,283
Necco serves thousands of youth and their families each year through a variety of programs in Kentucky, Ohio, West Virginia and Georgia. Necco will offer a "Comprehensive Services for Youth with Substance Use Disorders" program. The program is built upon a foundation of evidence-based assessments and treatment utilizing nationally recognized intervention models. Necco will offer these services to youth and families in every county in the Commonwealth from office locations in Lexington, Paducah, Grayson, Bowling Green, Florence, Louisville, Hazard, Owensboro, Somerset and Elizabethtown.

Our Lady of Peace, $1,471,143
Part of KentuckyOne Health, Our Lady of Peace has partnered with 26 public high schools in Oldham, Jefferson, Bullitt, Hardin, Meade and Breckinridge counties to implement a three-year after-school substance abuse intensive outpatient program for adolescents, ages 14-18. Services will include mobile assessments, substance use prevention education, a community-based intensive outpatient program and after care. Additionally, Our Lady of Peace has partnered with the district and fiscal courts in Oldham, Henry and Trimble counties to implement a juvenile home incarceration program that will allow adolescents to engage in an after-school substance abuse outpatient program as an alternative to detention center placement following drug/alcohol violations.

Pathways, $841,655
A-STAR (Adolescent Substance abuse Treatment and Recovery) is Pathways Community Mental Health Center’s answer to expanded adolescent substance abuse services in Kentucky’s northeastern region (Bath, Boyd, Carter, Greenup, Lawrence, Montgomery, Morgan and Rowan counties). A-STAR will expand the continuum of services by adding three specialists in adolescent addiction treatment to serve the region. In addition, two recovery support specialists will work to ensure that participants have a network of recovery support to facilitate long-term success. Pathways will train and supervise 10 existing school-based staff to screen, assess and provide evidence-based addiction services to their caseloads. Pathways will work to replicate and expand the successful Boyd County Juvenile Substance Abuse Program in two other counties. Through this funding, the Early Intervention Program will be reinstituted to serve youth, schools, courts and families.

Pennyroyal Center, $1,075,131
The goal of the Pennyroyal Kentucky Kids Recovery Project is to reduce substance use and abuse among the youth of the Pennyroyal Region (Caldwell, Christian, Crittenden, Hopkins, Muhlenberg, Lyon, Todd and Trigg counties). Services will include a full array of substance abuse and co-occurring services, including assessment, individual, group, and family therapy, an intensive outpatient program, school services, mentoring, case management, in-home therapy services, medication-assisted treatment and residential services. In addition to the treatment program expansion, training will be provided for all staff involved in this program. It is projected that the project will expand services to treat 300 youth and their families.

Ramsey Estep Homes, $1,521,744
Will create a dedicated residential substance abuse program and outpatient program. Ramey Estep Homes, located in Rush, will utilize existing facilities to dedicate residential beds that will serve youth from the entire state of Kentucky. Ramey also plans to enhance its network and its community-based services to create an outpatient substance abuse program with wraparound services that strengthens the continuum of care.

Rivendell Behavioral Health Center, $24,905
Currently has an inpatient and partial hospitalization adolescent substance abuse treatment program and is looking to expand on the program to better serve the needs of the community. The provider, located in Bowling Green, will develop outpatient programs for adolescents who struggle with substance abuse. The programs will utilize nationally recognized intervention models.

Specialized Alternatives for Families and Youth of Kentucky, $1,089,271
The program will connect families to services that support and sustain long-term recovery. This includes the development of a realistic transitional plan to help adolescents and families successfully bridge the journey from home to a variety of treatment options and back to living, going to school and/or working in the community again. New treatment programs will be developed in high-need areas of Pulaski, Mason and Warren counties to address both substance use and trauma. SAFY will develop a training program to help foster parents support early intervention and/or treatment for youth and families needing substance use services. Foster parent training and support will open respite, crisis stabilization and recovery support in 70 counties across the Commonwealth.

The Ridge Behavioral Health System, $1,350,008
The Ridge/Bluegrass Collaborative is a partnership effort between Ridge Behavioral Health and Bluegrass.org, the two largest providers of adolescent substance abuse services the Bluegrass area (Anderson, Bourbon, Boyle, Clark, Estill, Fayette, Franklin, Garrard, Harrison, Jessamine, Lincoln, Madison, Mercer Nicholas, Powell, Scott and Woodford counties). The project will implement the evidence-based Seven Challenges model of intervention across the full continuum of care for adolescents experiencing problems with all levels of substance abuse.

WestCare, $600,982
WestCare has a decade of experience in providing substance use and mental health treatment services to the citizens in eastern Kentucky. The organization will provide substance use treatment and prevention services for 500 eastern Kentucky youth over the next year. Outpatient treatment services for youth ages 16 to 21 will be available in Pike, Knott and Estill counties. The organization will also provide licensed residential substance use treatment to males using a youth track for ages 18 to 21 at Hal Rogers Appalachian Recovery Center in Pike County. WestCare Kentucky will target youth from 15 counties for residential services. The organization will also provide evidence-based prevention services to at least 300 area high school students in Pike and Estill counties.

The KY Kids Recovery grants were created after Attorney General Conway settled cases against two pharmaceutical companies for $32 million. The court orders filed in both settlements require that the funds be spent on drug treatment programs.

In addition to the $19 million in KY Kids Recovery grants, the settlement is providing $500,000 to complete construction of a Recovery Kentucky center in Carter County, $2.5 million for almost 900 scholarships over two years to Recovery Kentucky centers, and $560,000 to create 14 drug-free homes for people completing and transitioning out of residential substance abuse treatment programs.

The following entities are also receiving funds over the next two years from the settlement:

$6 million to administer and upgrade KASPER, Kentucky’s electronic prescription drug monitoring program.

$1 million to support substance abuse treatment for pregnant women by Chrysalis House in Lexington and Independence House in Corbin.

$1.5 million to the University of Kentucky to develop best practices for adolescent substance abuse treatment providers.

$1 million to develop a school-based substance abuse screening tool with the Kentucky Department of Education to intervene with at-risk children before they enter judicial or social services systems.

$250,000 to create a database to evaluate outcomes of adolescent treatment.

HB217 Makes Common Sense Improvements to House Bill 1


Governor Steve Beshear signed into law House Bill 217 on Tuesday, March 5, 2013, which makes some practical improvements to last year's landmark prescription drug abuse legislation.
House Bill 217 includes the following changes:
•modifies the diagnostic and treatment protocols for controlled substance prescribing, particularly to accommodate patients with acute pain management needs, such as end-stage cancer care;
•allows hospitals and long-term care facilities to have accounts for KASPER, the state’s online prescription drug monitoring program;
•clarifies the educational requirements for certain pain management facility employees;
•clarifies the acceptable qualifications for a physician owner or medical director of a pain management clinic; and
•makes the criminal record check required for licensure of persons prescribing or dispensing controlled substances a law, rather than regulation.

Impacts of HB1: In the last six months since HB1 took effect, total doses of all controlled substances dropped 10.4 percent from the same time period a year earlier. Prescribed doses of some of the most-abused drugs have also fallen
•Hydrocodone: down 11.8 percent;
•Oxycodone: down 11.8 percent;
•Oxymorphone (Opana): down 45.5 percent; and
•Alprazolam (Xanax): down 14.5 percent.
The Office of Inspector General identified 44 facilities as pain management clinics in 2012. Nineteen of them have closed or have discontinued providing pain management services – including 11 that shut down since HB1’s implementation. Another four have received cease and desist letters from the OIG and are in the process of closing.
HB1 expanded the KASPER system, the state’s prescription monitoring system, by requiring all prescription providers of controlled substances to register. Since implementation, registered accounts have nearly tripled.
Prior to HB1, KASPER provided less than 3,000 reports daily. Now, providers request approximately 18,000 reports each day. The vast majority of those reports – 93 percent – are processed in less than fifteen seconds.


Upcoming Meetings, Trainings & Conferences

2014 KY-ASAP State Board Meeting Dates:

August 21, 2014

November 20, 2014

All meetings will begin at 11 a.m. and will be held in the First Floor Conference Room of the Justice and Public Safety Building, 125 Holmes Street, Frankfort.



Marcus Nashelsky,MD, Medical Examiner

Last Updated 8/13/2014
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