Organizations Announce Partnership to Equip Record Number of Music Event Attendees with Life-Saving Naloxone

Sponsored - The following content is created on behalf of West Virginia Drug Intervention Institute and does not reflect the opinions of Gray Media or its editorial staff. To learn more about West Virginia Drug Intervention Institute, visit www.healingappalachia.org

Dr. Susan Bissett, President of the West Virginia Drug Intervention Institute (WVDII), Joe Murphy, CEO of Murphy Media and ONEbox LLC, and their teams, are no strangers to the opioid epidemic. The two organizations have worked collaboratively over four years to create and promote innovative strategies to reduce overdose deaths throughout West Virginia. On September 23 and 24, the organizations will promote naloxone training and distribution to those attending Healing Appalachia at the West Virginia State Fair Grounds. Individuals completing the training will receive an emergency overdose response kit, a VIP bag, and have access to a special tent at the event.

Those completing the training will be among the first to receive a ONEbox, a state-of-the-art emergency overdose response kit created by Huntington native Joe Murphy. The kit contains a short video that walks you through how to respond to an overdose and administer life-saving naloxone in real-time. Special merchandise from participating artists, one-of-a-kind event merchandise, and other surprises will also be given to persons completing the naloxone training. Hikma Pharmaceuticals donated 1,000 boxes (2,000 doses) of 8mg intranasal naloxone (Kloxxodo) for the event. And, Gibson Guitars, through their philanthropic arm, Gibson Gives donated VIP bags and merchandise, including a Les Paul Guitar (valued at over $4,000) that will be given to one lucky winner who completes the naloxone training.

Headliners at Healing Appalachia will include host acts Galactic, Tyler Childers, Margo Price, Arlo McKinley, and others. Tickets are accessible at: www.healingappalachia.org. Funds raised at Healing Appalachia are dispersed through the non-profit Hope in the Hills, which gave more than $50,000 in 2021 to such non-profits as Recovery Point WV, Camp Mariposa, Mercer County Fellowship, and many more. Hope in the Hills also helps fund music therapy sessions around Appalachia. First piloted in 2020, the music therapy program is fully launching in 2023.

“Together Murphy Media and the WVDII—with the help of our sponsors like Gibson Guitars and Gibson Gives, Hikma, and ONEbox—plans to train at least 1,201 attendees on intranasal naloxone,” said Joe Murphy, CEO of Murphy Media and ONEbox. “This represents the number of lives lost in West Virginia last year to opioid overdose. In order to accomplish this task, we have enlisted the help of over 20 service providers and organizations to assist with naloxone training.”

“The overall economic impact of the project exceeds $500,000, but more importantly, we have the potential to save over 1,200 lives as event attendees return to their communities with the ONEbox and life-saving naloxone,” explained Dr. Susan Bissett, president of the WVDII. “This is truly an event where we have the opportunity to heal Appalachia by saving lives.”

“We hope to train every artist, musician, roadie, and road manager with the ONEbox,” explained Dave Lavender, board president of Hope in the Hills. “Not only will this help spread life-saving naloxone throughout the country, as well as the emergency kit, it may also help reduce the stigma associated with substance use by having well-known and influential artists equipped to share the important message of saving lives in their hometowns and while on tour.”

For more information, contact Dr. Susan Bissett at 304-941-4182 or email susan@wvdii.org.

WSAZ