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Local officials and Nassau County residents gathered at the beginning of the month during a community forum that highlighted the success of the approach, which focuses on outreach efforts geared toward individuals who have overdosed in the region.
Addiction treatment professionals were also present at the community forum and emphasized that the operation has assisted the area fight against the effects of the opioid epidemic.
One week after a drug overdose occurs, law enforcement officials reach out to the survivors and make sure that they have the ability to access all of the resources that they may need.
The resources the officials aim to provide to the overdose survivors include orientation about drug addiction treatment programs in the area and the admission process as well as counseling, drug detoxification and more.
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The operation is named after Natalie Ciappa, a Nassau County resident who passed away after an overdose caused by opioids when she was just 18 years old.
In 2008, the year when Ciappa passed away, there were 137 Long Islanders who died due to an opioid-related overdose.
Ciappa's parents decided that her death would not be in vain and reached out to the Nassau County district attorney's office to start a campaign to promote awareness about substance abuse among teens and young adults.
Efforts made by Nassau County officials and local community members such as the Ciappa family are just now shown to be effective.
The county's medical examiner's office recently released reports revealing that the region has seen a decrease of 30 percent in overdoses since last January.
This is the first time in five years that the county has seen a decrease in the number of drug overdoses and drug overdose deaths.
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