Experts to Discuss the Collateral Impact of Opioid Misuse in Upcoming Webinar

PDFNJ, NJ Attorney General’s Office and OEFA to Host Fourth Webinar of 2023

Millburn, New Jersey, UNITED STATES

Millburn, New Jersey, April 25, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- National medical experts will discuss the effects of opioid misuse and addiction that go beyond the physical and mental impact on those using various forms of opioids, in the next installment of the Knock Out Opioid Abuse Day Learning Series, organized by the Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey (PDFNJ), the Office of the New Jersey Coordinator for Addiction Responses and Enforcement Strategies (NJ CARES) and the Opioid Education Foundation of America (OEFA). 

The webinar, “The Collateral Impact of Opioid Misuse,” will be held at 11 a.m. Thursday, April 27, and will examine the indirect yet significant effects of opioid misuse and addiction. Expert speakers will include Amesika Nyaku, MD, Assistant Professor with Division of Infectious Diseases at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School; Robert Gaydosh, Manager of the New Jersey Division of Highway Traffic Safety; and Adrienne Simpkins, Director of Outreach & Capacity Building with the New Jersey Coalition to End Domestic Violence.

“Opioid use, misuse and addiction can manifest itself in ways beyond the health and wellbeing of the person using substances,” said PDFNJ Executive Director Angelo Valente. “This webinar will provide vital information on the downstream impact of opioid misuse and addiction and what can be done to prevent it.”

The webinar will be the fourth in the 2023 Knock Out Opioid Abuse Day Learning Series. PDFNJ in collaboration with OEFA and NJ CARES, which is responsible for overseeing addiction-fighting efforts across the New Jersey Office of the Attorney General, have planned to address wide-ranging topics concerning the opioid epidemic in this year’s Learning Series, including educating families about proper opioid use and potential misuse, opioid alternatives for youths through seniors, the rise of polysubstance use, the intersection of race, culture, and the opioid epidemic, and evidence-based programs for addiction prevention, treatment and recovery.

The Knock Out Opioid Abuse Day Learning Series began in 2020 in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic to educate New Jersey residents on various aspects of the opioid epidemic and its impact on New Jersey and the nation. It is a branch of PDFNJ’s Knock Out Opioid Abuse Day statewide initiative, which has been held annually on October 6 since 2016 to educate residents and prescribers on the risks of prescription opioids and to raise awareness of the opioid crisis throughout the state.

The 2022 Learning Series included 12 webinars that drew a total audience of more than 8,000 participants and featured various speakers discussing all aspects of the opioid epidemic, including Sam Quinones, Author of “Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic”; Dr. Andrew Kolodny, Medical Director of Opioid Policy Research, Heller School for Social Policy and Management; and former New Jersey Governor James McGreevey. Other speakers included representatives from the Drug Enforcement Administration, New Jersey State Police, National Institute on Drug Abuse, New Jersey Department of Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Governor’s Council on Alcohol and Drug Addiction and New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs.

NJ CARES data shows that nearly 2,900 people in New Jersey died from suspected drug overdoses in 2022. A vast majority of these overdose deaths involved some form of opioid including prescription painkillers, heroin and synthetic opioids, such as fentanyl.

To learn more about the Knock Out Opioid Abuse Day and for a schedule of webinars, please visit


Best known for its statewide anti-drug advertising campaign, the Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey is a private not-for-profit coalition of professionals from the communications, corporate and government communities whose collective mission is to reduce demand for illicit drugs in New Jersey through media communication. To date, more than $200 million in broadcast time and print space has been donated to the Partnership’s New Jersey campaign, making it the largest public service advertising campaign in New Jersey’s history. Since its inception the Partnership has garnered 217 advertising and public relations awards from national, regional and statewide media organizations.