Health & Wellness

Opioid crisis hits children, seniors across Middlesex County

b55f35539b9fa0d15624_IMG_1310.JPG
Slide showing statistics about the Opioid crisis and cost in human life across the country. Credits: Tom Haydon
15b4b884cb647d536798_IMG_1308.JPG
Sayreville Police Chief John Zebrowski speaking at a forum on the Opioid crisis that was held at St. Peter's University Hospital in New Brunswick Credits: Tom Haydon
b55f35539b9fa0d15624_IMG_1310.JPG

NEW BRUNSWICK – Sayreville Police Chief John Zebrowski, sees the reports his officers file. Several times each week his officers respond to calls of an opioid drug overdose and find a person near death.

Officers must apply Narcan, a power antidote dispensed through the nose, that quick counteracts the overdose and saves the person for that episode. Too often, Zebrowsky says, the scene repeats itself over and over again.

“On a weekend particularly, we could have four or five calls. On a Saturday there could be two or three calls for the same person,” Zebrowski said.

Sign Up for E-News

Linda Carroll, chief nursing officer at St. Peter’s Healthcare Systems in New Brunswick, tells of other stories, of hospital staff going to schools to explain the dangers of opioids to students.

Educators at one middle school in Middlesex County reported of 11 students had overdosed, Carroll says.

“Children as young as nine are starting to experiment with drugs,” she said.

Statistically, three out of 4 heroin addicts started using prescription drugs. When those drugs ran out, people switched to heroin because that cost $4 a bag, and one tablet of the drug Percocet costs $30, Carroll said.

A year ago, Zebrowski saw police had to do more than respond to overdose victims who were near death. He reached out to St. Peter’s which formed an Opioid task force to provide services for overdose victims, reach out to school students and the community at large and explain the crisis.

Zebrowski pointed to numbers showing that more 170 people die each day from drug overdoses across the country.

Now, when Sayreville police respond to an overdose and get the person to a hospital, the task force sends a peer counsellor, who is himself a recovering addict, to talk to talk to the person.

Often when an officer gives a victim Narcan and the person quickly recovers, that victim does  want to be further involved with police and does not want a trip to a hospital. In those cases, the police chief said, a Sayreville officer will call the person the next day to check their condition and offer help.

“We want to stop that flow of overdoses,” he said.

His comments came at public forum earlier this month and St. Peter’s. A second forum is scheduled April 24.

The task force involves health care, recovery, and family support agencies from across Middlesex County, and as well law enforcement agencies.

“New Jersey is confronting a staggering public health crisis brought about by prescription opioid abuse,” Carroll said. “This is an epidemic that knows no economic, racial or geographic limits, and it’s one we must fight with education and resources,” she said.

Information and registration for the April 24 meeting is available by calling St. Peter’s University Hospital or contacting Marcia Linico at mlinico@saintpetersuh.com.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

South Plainfield

The Athlete of the Week Samantha Pullen Girls’ Spring Track

The South Plainfield High School Girls’ track team is off to another great start in the 2018 season.  Their record currently stands at 3-0. This past week, the Lady Tigers defeated divisional rivals Metuchen and Middlesex by the scores of 80-56 and 75-56.  They then went on to dominate Bishop Ahr by a score of 112-24.  Much of the Lady Tigers success has been due to the ...

The Athlete of the Week Tatianna Sutor Girls’ Lacrosse

The South Plainfield High School Girls’ Lacrosse team is off to a fantastic start to their 2018 season with a record of 2-0. This past week, the Lady Tigers crushed division rival Bishop Ahr by the score of 14-2, and then went on to beat Boonton 6-3.  A huge part of the success for South Plainfield has been due in a large part to the contributions of senior goalie Tatianna ...

Obituaries

Victor Kochmann, 92, passed away on Wednesday, March 21, 2018 surrounded by his loving family in ...
Read more

Letters to the Editor

Letter Welcoming Mike Zushma to Politics

April 19, 2018

Dear Editor, 

I'd like to welcome Mike Zushma to the world of politics and congratulate him on being selected as the town's Democratic Chairman.

 

I've served as Republican chair since 2009, and I've always enjoyed spending my time helping good people get elected to office.  In South Plainfield, it's never about party:  People work together and try ...

Natalie Stilo Signs with Drew University Golf Team

April 20, 2018

Natalie Stilo, Senior at Bishop George Ahr High School, has signed with Drew University's golf team. Currently, Natalie is on Bishop Ahr's golf team. Golf became her passion after her 10 year career in gymnastics ended. She has been working on her golf game and is excited to have the opportunity to play for Drew. She will attend Drew University in the Fall, majoring in Molecular Biology ...

Community Happenings

South Plainfield High School Hall Of Fame Is Seeking Nominees

April 19, 2018

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ - The South Plainfield High School Hall of Fame Committee is again holding their search for candidates for induction into the SPHS Hall of Fame.  The Hall of Fame was established at South Plainfield High School to recognize outstanding graduates as leaders in their fields who could serve as role models for current and future students.

Candidates will be evaluated on ...

Kennedy School Welcomes Author Lisa Mullarkey

April 19, 2018

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ – Teacher and children’s author Lisa Mullarkey stopped by John F. Kennedy Elementary School on April 18. 

“This year’s guest author was very well received by our students and staff. Mrs. Mullarkey spent the day motivating our students to be future writers," said Kennedy Principal Kevin Hajduk. "It was a privilege for our students at ...

Holy Savior Academy to Hold Open House on April 24

April 18, 2018

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ – Holy Savior Academy, an AdvancedED accredited Middlebrook Deanery Catholic School located in South Plainfield, will hold an open house the evening of Tuesday, April 24.At this time, prospective students and their families in pre-K3 through 8th grade will have the opportunity to tour the school, meet teachers and register. 

“Holy Savior ...

Elks Lodge #2298 Hosted Princess Breakfast

April 19, 2018

The South Plainfield Elks Lodge #2298 Youth Activities Committee recently hosted a Princess breakfast, in conjunction with the South Plainfield Summer Drama Workshop.   On the menu we featured only the BEST breakfast in town.  Our lil princesses were able to come down to have their pictures taken with their favorite Disney characters. 

The South Plainfield Elks Lodge #2298 ...

Part Time Position in Municipal Court

The South Plainfield Borough is seeking to hire a part time person with strong customer service skills to perform detailed Municipal Court clerical work.

Responsibilities include but are not limited to:

Answering telephone and walk in inquiries, data entry, maintaining files and records for accuracy, processing payments, related duties as required.

Successful candidates should process ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_bbe5d2f368f320d67fab_img_3263

Sun, April 22, 1:00 PM

South Plainfield

Open House 312 Elissa Court South Plainfield

Real Estate

Carousel_image_6fa66652e238649d073e_suburban_woman_s_club

Sun, April 22, 2:00 PM

South Plainfield

Suburban Woman's Club Luncheon/Fashion Show April ...

Carousel_image_79e43290d41725d212ec_taste_of_south_plainfield_2018

Mon, April 23, 6:00 PM

South Plainfield

Taste of South Plainfield

Carousel_image_bad097ae8b2fe018094c_mayors_wellness

Sat, April 28, 9:00 AM

South Plainfield

Spring Wellness Health Fair - Mayor's Wellness

Carousel_image_5cb3a344be063f4eef87_hf_2018_updated-page-001

Sat, April 28, 9:00 AM

South Plainfield

South Plainfield's Annual Health and Fitness Fair

Carousel_image_540ba92b7ee7d0a56fba_elvis_tribute_final

Sat, April 28, 7:00 PM

South Plainfield

A Tribute to our Veterans - Jim Barone

Columns

Retro Review: Johnny Got His Gun by Dalton Trumbo

Retro Review: Johnny Got His Gun by Dalton Trumbo (Citadel Press, 1970)

 

How does a reviewer do justice to a book called “the great American novel”? I first read Johnny Got His Gun during the Viet Nam war, when young people, nationwide, were protesting fighting in a war that was a senseless waste of life; a war in which the United States had no business participating.

Bookmarks

Your library is a hub of education and entertainment that is available to you not just when the library is open, but at all hours, thanks to our great online resources.  

If you want to brush up on your computer skills, or learn something new, try Learning Express.  You can access it through the library’s website. Once you’ve registered (you’ll need ...

Suburban Woman’s Club Hears Presentation on WWII Air Force Service Pilots

During World War II, one thousand seventy-four aviators, all with prior experience and airman certificates, flew over 60 million miles; transported every type of military aircraft; towed targets for live anti-aircraft gun practice; simulated strafing missions and transported cargo. Thirty-eight members of this elite group lost their lives and one went missing in performing their ...

Press Releases

Bill Creating Automatic Voter Registration Now Law

April 21, 2018

TRENTON, NJ – Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Speaker Craig Coughlin, Gary Schaer, Joann Downey, Daniel Benson, Benjie Wimberly, John McKeon, Mila Jasey and Nicholas Chiaravalloti to automatically register and update voter registration for those applying for a driver’s license, examination permit, probationary driver’s license or non-driver identification ...