Gov. Rick Scott highlights funding, proposal to combat opioid epidemic

Gov. Rick Scott joined the Collier County Sheriff’s Office Thursday to highlight his efforts to combat opiod abuse in Florida.

Scott recommended $53 million in funding and explained how HB 21 and SB 8 aim to limit the chance of drug addiction, reduce the ability for dangerous drugs to spread in Florida’s communities and ensure law enforcement officers have the resources they need.

Florida was ranked first in opioid related deaths in 2016, according to the Center for Disease Control.

“Unfortunately, that’s whats happening in our state so we have to work hard to fight this,” Scott said.

Kristina Miller recalls living through her addiction to prescription painkillers, the same drug that also killed her brother.

Miller now uses her experiences to help addicts overcome their battle against opioids.

“I’ve been to the same hospital room twice. The same one my brother died in, I went back to for the same reason,” Miller said.

Scott’s plan would require doctors to undergo continuing education and limit them from prescribing opioids.

“When you think about the death toll, we need to do anything and everything to get these people treatment,” Miller said.

Scott recently recognized Collier County Sheriff’s Office deputies for their efforts in responding to a potential overdose in North Naples earlier this month.

Reporter:Olivia Mancino