DPH launches drug addiction program in restaurant industry

The First State restaurant industry is getting help from the state to fight the stigma associated with substance use disorders.

The Delaware Division of Public Health launched the Restaurant Accolade program earlier this spring to address addiction and opioid overdoses in the local restaurant industry.

DPH’s Office of Health Crisis Response (OHCR) works to train and educate staff, managers and owners on how to reverse an opioid overdose and support colleagues struggling with an addiction.

“In 2019, we made a “mortality surveillance reportsaid Kate Brookins, public health administrator at DPH. “This mortality was basically an analysis of all overdose deaths in our state in 2017. So we looked in very, very detail at who died – what kind of people. ”

Brookins says the report found that 10% of the 447 overdose deaths that year involved employees in the food service industry.

To receive certification and recognition, restaurants and their staff undergo three levels of hands-on training.

Several restaurants have already reached the bronze training level after initial awareness of the program.

Restaurants and food establishments that sign up for overdose prevention training receive first aid kits containing naloxone, a drug used to reverse the effects of opioids.


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Cecil N. Messick