Project Lazarus to help Southwest VA battle opiate abuse - WVVA TV Bluefield Beckley WV News, Weather and Sports

Project Lazarus to help Southwest VA battle opiate abuse

RICHLANDS, V. a. (WVVA)-- A group from North Carolina hopes to help Southwest Virginia reduce its prescription drug abuse problem.

The Lazarus Project, a community effort in NC aimed at stopping opiate abuse, came to Tazewell County Wednesday to hold a forum with leaders there. They brainstormed ideas about how to tackle the problem, together.

Police said Wednesday that overdose deaths in Tazewell County are the highest per capita in the Commonwealth.

The group wants to save lives, but also motivate the whole community to act.

Fred Brason, President of Project Lazarus, said, "We help build coalitions in communities. It's not somebody coming in from the outside saying, 'we're going to fix your problem.' That's not what we're about. We're helping, through technical assistance and training, how community coalitions can address the problem themselves."

One Care of Southwest VA is partnering with The Lazarus Project in Tazewell County. They hope to act on ideas they have brainstormed in the coming months.

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