Bringing together 300 participants and 18 vendors in the fight against drug abuse, the 2016 Harford County Drug Prevention, Intervention and Treatment Symposium was held on June 23 at Bel Air High School. Hosted by the Harford County Department of Community Services Office of Drug Control Policy, this year’s symposium featured the theme “Help, Understanding, Hope.” The Harford County office holds annual symposiums to educate the public and professionals about issues related to drug and alcohol abuse. Continuing education credits in prevention, addictions and social work are also available for professionals in attendance.
The 2016 symposium featured keynote speaker Joani Gammill of InterventionRN who gave a presentation entitled “Intervention: Where Hope Can Begin.” Ms. Gammill showed the audience how to facilitate an intervention, including examples of what not to do drawn from modern TV programs. As a former opiate user, she also shared her own intervention featured on the “Dr. Phil” prime-time special “Escaping Addiction.”
A variety of topics were covered during the symposium’s morning and afternoon workshops: Families Under the Influence of Active Addiction; Everybody’s Mad: An Ethical Framework for Understanding and Responding to Anger; Substance Related Disorders During Pregnancy, Complications and Treatment Recommendations; Digital Safety Seminar; Smoking: What’s Trending?; Maryland Opiate Overdose Response Program; Understanding Opiate Addiction; Families in Recovery from Addiction; and “Treat Issues for Adolescents and Young Adults Substance Abuse.”
The final plenary address featured William Hagerty, M.A., M.P.A., who spoke about stress management for substance abuse treatment professionals and others engaged in the lives of people with addictions.
“Our annual drug symposium is an opportunity for providers and partners in the fields of addiction and prevention to learn, collaborate, and develop new resources in the fight against substance abuse,” said Joe Ryan, manager of the county’s Office of Drug Control Policy. “Our symposium is unique in Maryland and an important component of Harford County’s awareness strategy.”
For more information on drug control programs and training in Harford County, contact the Harford County Department of Community Services Office of Drug Control Policy at 410-638-3333 or www.harfordcountymd.gov/services/drugcontrol.