We at Working Partners® know that information sponsored and imparted by an employer can have a tremendous impact on employees’ lives. For this reason we decided to publish our SPECIAL REPORT: Prescription Drugs, Ohio Responds. We encourage employers to join the fight against prescription (Rx) drug abuse by becoming enlightened and taking action; sharing meaningful information with their workforces.
Prescription painkiller abuse has skyrocketed over the last 10 years and has reached epidemic proportions.
- Four Ohioans die each day because of drug-related poisoning.
- Employees could be unknowing accomplices in supplying abusers with prescription drugs. Nearly five percent of individuals, aged 12 and older, take their drugs from friends and relatives without asking.
- Employees abusing painkillers can cost a business an average of $7,000 each year through lost productivity, absenteeism, theft, etc.
- The Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation spends over $50 million on Rx narcotics each year.
Everyone pays the price for Rx abuse: abusers, families and employers. Workplaces are in the thick of this issue whether we like it or not. These painkillers are prescribed to manage pain from illness and injury, workplace injuries included. Covering the costs of these drugs comes from health insurance, paychecks and workers’ compensation.
Know that as an employer you can do something about it. Join the four Ohio cabinet-level agencies featured in the SPECIAL REPORT and get the word out about the danger of these drugs. Educate your employees on steps they can take to reduce the risk of painkiller addiction and how to effectively dispose of left over drugs they have from a prescription to prevent children from getting them.
Besides general information about what these agencies are doing, the report also features ways you, the employer, can get involved and resources where you can get additional information to share with your employees.
So check out the report and share the information. Afterward share with us your thoughts and what you did to spread the word. We would love to hear from you.