Walnut Creek MEDS Coalition
Mar 03, 2016 10:36AM
● By Jennifer Neys
Walnut Creek resident Nancy Juracka coordinates the Walnut
Creek MEDS (Medication Education and Disposal Safety) Coalition, and their
kick-off meeting is at Sports Basement in Walnut Creek on March 2 at 6:30pm. March
is prescription drug awareness month, and the coalition's goal is to bring
community awareness to this issue. The meeting includes a short film entitled Parents 360 RX,
about the impact of prescription drug abuse on families, followed by a panel
Juracka works with April Rovero, who lives in San Ramon and who started the National Coalition Against Prescription Drug Abuse (NCAPDA) after her son, Joey, died of an overdose at Arizona State University. Rovero started an active MEDS Coalition with about 20-30 members. Juracka joined her as an outreach director for Walnut Creek and continues to branch out to other communities. “This cause is personally important to me because my son also died from alcohol and drug abuse. Many of my friends have also lost children, and we believe education is key. I hope to get others from the community interested in joining me. I have met with the police officer at Northgate and will be teaming up with her for school programs. There is a lot that we can do,” said Juracka.
You can read more about MEDS and April Rovero at www.ncapda.org and can read about the landmark case in Los Angeles where the doctor who was prescribing pills to students at ASU was just sentenced to 30 years for the death of 8 students, including April's son.
The 2nd Annual "Dose of Awareness" 5K Walk and Health Expo was held on February 28, when community members walked in memory of thousands of Americans who have been lost to our national prescription drug abuse epidemic. Their mission is to educate and equip youth and adults of all ages with information and resources that can help keep them safe. “I am hopeful that we will do something like this at Heather Farm Park in the future,” added Juracka.