Stark County Opiate Symposium Set for Wed., Dec. 7

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Day long event focuses on community solutions for prescription opioid abuse and heroin use

OpiateSymposium_Banner_2016_RSVPStark County, OH (November 18, 2016) Stark County Mental Health & Addiction Recovery (StarkMHAR) is hosting a third annual Opiate Symposium on Wed., Dec. 7 from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at Walsh University Barrette Center, 2020 E. Maple St. in North Canton. Stark County area medical professionals, health and human service providers, school staff, community leaders, law and criminal justice professionals, parents and community members are invited to learn about addiction medicine and pharmacy solutions to combat the heroin epidemic in Ohio and nationally, as well as how the state prison system is coping with the opiate epidemic.

Register online by Nov. 30 at The event is free, but attendees must register prior to the conference. StarkMHAR is partnering with the Stark County Health Department to plan, assist with speakers, and provide specialized materials to area medical professionals. Event and morning snack sponsor is Adapt Pharma.

National, regional and local presenters include experts Gerald Shulman, M.A., M.A.C., FACATA, ASAM criteria author; Dr. Nicole T. Labor, DO, Summa Health; Terri Ghitman, RPH, State of Ohio Board of Pharmacy; Gary Mohr, Director of Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction; Sarah Thompson, Executive Director of Ohio Citizen Advocates of Addiction Recovery and Michelle Cordova, Esq., Stark County Prosecutor’s Office. Continuing education credits including CEUs, CMEs and CPEs are pending for applicable sessions.

Gerald Shulman is a psychologist, Master Addiction Counselor and a fellow of the American College of Addiction Treatment Administrators. He has been a clinician, clinical supervisor, administrator in single and multi-site systems. He is a trainer and consultant who has provided services in 44 states and six countries and has been the author of each edition of the ASAM criteria. He is the president of Shulman and Associates, Training and Consulting in Behavioral Health located in Jacksonville, FL. Shulman will be discussing the criteria for addictive, substance-related and co-occurring conditions.

Terri Ghitman has been a pharmacist with the Ohio State Board of Pharmacy since July 2012. She has a diverse background in a variety of pharmacy environments including mail order, specialty pharmacy, special project management, and retail practices. A strong interest in prescription monitoring programs and legal/regulatory areas of industry led her to her current position as a pharmacist within Ohio’s Automated Rx Reporting System (OARRS) prescription monitoring department of the board. Along with OARRS, Terri leads the monthly law review for reciprocity candidates, and assists in the approval process of Board-approved Law CE programs and employer-based qualified pharmacy technician exams. Ghitman will be discussing Ohio’s tool to track the dispensing and personal furnishing of controlled prescription drugs to patients.

Dr. Nicole Labor, Addiction Specialist and Associate Medical Director, Summa Health Medical Group, uses her experience as a former addict to treat and help other substance abusers like her.  She is the medical director for the Interval Brotherhood Home, a recovery center in Akron, and leads the medicated-assisted treatment program for OneEighty, an outpatient center in Wooster that provides substance-abuse treatment. Dr. Labor will share her perspective on the stigma of addiction.

Gary Mohr was appointed the director of the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction (DRC) by Governor John Kasich in January 2011, he has more than 40 years of correctional experience and a national reputation for innovative and efficient prison management. Throughout his career, Mohr has served in a number of corrections leadership positions in both public and private sectors. He will be discussing the utilization of prisons as addiction treatment centers.

For questions or more information about the event, please contact Training Coordinator Carrie Long at or 330-455-6644.

A highly addictive opioid drug, heroin use has been steadily rising nationally, across the state and in Stark County. StarkMHAR is tracking this upswing and working with local service providers, criminal justice and law enforcement, medical professionals and business leaders, families and students to educate the community about the destructive effects and costly medical consequences of opioid abuse and heroin use. In 2015, accidental opiate overdose deaths (68) outnumbered motor vehicle traffic deaths (19) in Stark County.