For the second year in a row, the Choices Matter campaign joined thousands of 5K participants to support Shatterproof’s Rise Up Against Addiction 5K Walk/Run initiative. The Shatterproof Rise Up Against Addiction 5K Walk/Run is a national movement dedicated to bringing the disease of addiction into the light. By partnering with Shatterproof, a national nonprofit dedicated to ending the devastation addiction causes families, Choices Matter was able to share its message on patient empowerment and distribute information about non-opioid options to attendees in New York, Atlanta and Irvine, CA this fall.
Choices Matter physician spokespeople highlighted the importance of educating patients about opioid alternatives and discussed how their patients have benefited from the use of non-opioid options. In New York City, plastic surgeon Dr. Gregory Greco spoke to thousands of walkers and runners about the need for surgeons to reduce the amount of opioids they prescribe. At the Atlanta walk, thoracic and cardiac surgeon Dr. Africa Wallace encouraged patients, especially women – who are 40 percent more likely to become persistent opioid users after surgery – to talk with physicians about effective non-opioid pain management options. Orthopedic surgeon Dr. Nirav Amin addressed the crowd in Irvine, CA and discussed how surgery has become an inadvertent gateway to the opioid epidemic. Dr. Amin also shared proactive steps that patients can take to eliminate the risk of unnecessary opioid exposure.
At the Choices Matter booth, participants stopped by for swag including cinch bags, cell phone sleeves and pens, and were encouraged to advocate for their health and talk to their doctors about non-opioid pain management options. Key findings from the 2018 Choices Matter status report, Exposing a Silent Gateway to Persistent Opioid Use, were also shared, including statistics that show patients continue to receive a high number of opioids following surgery.
Attendees were asked to take a stand against opioid overprescribing by taking the pledge to talk to their doctors about opioid alternatives and how to effectively manage pain. For more information on Shatterproof 5K events, visit www.shatterproof5k.org.