Opioid Task Force

The Opioid Task Force will develop a comprehensive and coordinated plan to reduce opioid dependence among students, physicians and citizens of Pennsylvania.

Opioid Resources>>

Opioids in Pennsylvania

Joan M. Grzybowski DOThis year Governor Tom Wolf did something drastic and usually reserved for times of extreme emergency. He declared an opioid and heroin overdose crisis to address a medical issue affecting our state in a historically unprecedented manner. At least 10-15 Pennsylvania citizens die every day from a drug overdose.

In 2016, we had the fourth highest rate of overdoses in the United States. The CDC statistics show a 43 percent rise of overdoses in Pennsylvania over the last fiscal year. That notorious title makes us the lead state in the increase with New Jersey, Ohio, and Delaware a close runner-up and killing more people than motor vehicle accidents. Pennsylvania, through the Pa. Department of Health, has developed a multi-tiered plan to address this problem. I encourage you to log onto their website at www.health.pa.gov, to view the 2018 guidelines regarding opioids. They have been published by the Pa Dept. of Health to assist you in your practice of medicine and are available in a PDF version at that site.

Through our physician general Rachel Levine, via a state-wide standing order, Naloxone has become available to any citizen in Pennsylvania in need of it. They also have a 24-hour hotline available for those in need of treatment resources and it is listed below.


We at POMA have recently started a task force addressing this crisis. We hope to provide information and direction to our physicians, students and citizens of Pennsylvania to help guide you in dealing with this health crisis. We will be posting updates and information throughout the year. Thank you all for the good work you do as you serve your patients through these trying times.


Joan M. Grzybowski, DO
POMA President

 Opioid Resources


David Festinger, PhD, director of substance abuse research and education at PCOM discusses research on and treatment of substance abuse disorders and how all health care practitioners—should be working together to address the opioid epidemic. 


Osteopathic physician and POMA member Bradley Miller, DO speaks on addiction in rural communities and the obligation to teach future physicians in this interview with PCOM Digest Magazine.


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