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Keene State College Releases Results of Study to Uncover Truth about Prescription Drugs in Monadnock Region

February 1, 2012

College Partners with Monadnock Voices Helping to Inform Regional and State Initiatives

Keene, NH, February 1, 2012: Keene State College today releases the results of a semester-long student research project on adult prescription drug abuse in the Monadnock region. Students assessed the readiness and knowledge level of professionals, police enforcement and citizens, as well as conducted focus groups with drug abusers to provide recommendations on how to take steps toward solving this problem. The information not only informed strategies for the Monadnock region, but also Governor Lynch's statewide plan to address prescription drug abuse, which was released online at http://www.nhcenterforexcellence.org/pdfs/Rx/Call_to_Action_complete.pdf

The research was conducted in partnership with Monadnock Voices for Prevention, a regional network working together to reduce substance abuse. The study provided data on adult abuse - information that Monadnock Voices needed in order to create strategies to address prescription drug abuse. The research was conducted by approximately 12 groups of students taking two Health in Society classes at Keene State during the fall 2011 semester, under the guidance of Health Science Assistant Professor Marjorie Droppa.

Keene State College students provided recommendations on how to deal with the widespread problem. Some recommendations based on the research include:

Legislative support for law enforcement to help prevent abuse

Stickers placed on pill bottles that encourage proper disposal of remaining medication and discourage sharing medicine

Completion of the State of New Hampshire prescription monitoring program

Implementing an educational program that reaches everyone from youth to healthcare providers

"This research by Keene State is unique, and it is a critical contribution to finding solutions and bringing awareness to a problem that has largely been overlooked. The students provided recommendations that no one has ever thought of, and we will be doing our best to implement the recommendations in the Monadnock region," said Kelly Steiner, Prevention Project Director at Monadnock Voices for Prevention. "Based on the recommendations and data gathered by Keene State, we have been able to apply for grants and look for ways to expand our services to address this serious problem. These recommendations were also important contributions to Governor Lynch's statewide plan, as I shared them with the statewide consortium that helped to develop the plan."

"This research has important implications for the Monadnock region, and beyond. Keene State students have contributed greatly to a clearer understanding of the widespread problem of prescription drug abuse, while gaining research skills and a personal understanding of this critical problem in our state," said Assistant Professor Droppa.

About Keene State College

Keene State College is a preeminent public liberal arts college that ensures student access to world-class academic programs. Integrating academics with real-world application and active community and civic engagement, Keene State College prepares graduates to meet society's challenges by thinking critically, acting creatively, and serving the greater good. To learn more about Keene State College, visit www.keene.edu.

Keene State College: Wisdom to make a difference.