North Carolina’s Opioid Action Plan was released in June 2017 with community partners to combat the opioid crisis. The plan with an update to the OAP 2.0 in June 2019 and again to become the Opioid and Substance Use Action Plan (OSUAP) 3.0 in May 2021 to continue to address the issue.
North Carolina’s OSUAP 3.0 updates the 2019 plan to include a broadened focus on polysubstance use as well as centering equity and lived experiences to ensure that the strategies address the overdose epidemic are led by those closest to the issue. The plan focuses on four priority areas to address the epidemic:
Center Equity and Lived Experiences by acknowledging systems that have disproportionately harmed historically marginalized people (HMP), implementing programs that reorient those systems, and increasing access to comprehensive, culturally competent, and linguistically appropriate drug user health services for HMPs.
Prevent future addiction and address trauma by supporting children and families.
Reduce Harm by moving beyond just opioids to address polysubstance use.
Connect to Care by increasing treatment access for justice-involved people and expanding access to housing and employment supports to recover from the pandemic together.
Overarching these four priorities is an effort to track progress, measure impact, and monitor emerging trends to ensure that our actions are informed by data. The North Carolina OSUAP 3.0 aims to identify impactful, feasible strategies to reduce overdoses in North Carolina and prevent the next wave of the epidemic.
We track our progress and measure our impact through metrics (e.g., counts and rates) and local actions (e.g., policies and programs), each grouped under strategy areas. The Menu of Local Actions can be found here.
A data dashboard provides integration and visualization of state, regional, and county-level metrics for partners across North Carolina to track progress toward reaching the goals outlined in the NC Opioid and Substance Use Action Plan.