DeKalb County played host to an OPIOID Prevention Summit that attracted policy makers, Industry Professionals, Service Providers, Institutions, Law Enforcement Agencies and County government from the Metro Atlanta and across the country. Commissioner Larry Johnson in partnership with Aetna, Morehouse School of Medicine, FDHA and STAND Inc., hosted this event at the Porter Sanford Performing Arts Center. The purpose of this summit was to provide the platform for dialogue among stakeholders on the impact of this epidemic and to leverage on existing resources to better serve the community. The event started with a Panel discussion moderated by Commissioner Larry Johnson and breakout sessions that were facilitated by professionals in the industry.
The CEO of DeKalb County, Michael Thurmond, express his gratitude and support to Commissioner Larry Johnson for his initiative and always in the forefront of Prevention. According to Frank Ulibarri, Marketing President for Aetna, “I have a pretty busy schedule, but this is the single most important thing on my schedule for this month.” The event attracted many notables in the industry among whom are; Dr. Joseph Bona, CEO DeKalb Community Service Board, Dr. Patrice Harris Chair of the Board for the American Medical Association, Dr. Sandra Ford DeKalb County Board of Health, Dr. Sultan Sims, Medical director-Southeast CCOE Magellan Health, Dr. Justine Welsh, Director, Emory Adolescent Abuse Treatment Service, Dr. Barbara Ziv, Medical Director for Aetna, Lisa Flagg, CEO FDHA, John Lawrence, Senior Vice President Public and Labor for Aetna, Ted Golden, Retired DEA agent, Lerissa Smith, Research Associate Morehouse School of Medicine, Fredericka Dent, DeKalb County Drug Court, Pastor Barnette, Resident Pastor, Peace Baptist Church, Charles Sperling, CEO of STAND Inc., and Russ Hamill, Assistant Chief of Police, Montgomery County Maryland, Commissioner Greg Adams and many other elected officials from around the surrounding counties. At the initial planning stage, our goal was to preregister 150 participants, however, we recorded well over that number as the registration was extended to accommodate additional interest.
During the wrap session, Commissioner Larry Johnson, charged the participants to Connect, Collaborate and Conquer this epidemic.