Opioid epidemic impacts 3 out of 4 farm families

The opioid epidemic continues to wreak havoc on rural America.

Minnesota Farm Bureau Foundation director Ruth Meirick says opioid addiction is impacting rural families at greater numbers than the urban population.

“Three out of four farm families have been impacted by the opioid epidemic, and three out of four farmers say they can access large amounts of prescription medicine without a prescription.”

She tells Brownfield a change in behavior can be a sign of opioid addiction.

“If they’ve constantly done something and they’re no longer doing it there may be cause for concern. If somebody is showing signs of maybe they need to take a painkiller (or) sometimes people withdraw from families.”

Meirick encourages all families to dispose of unused prescription medicines and says at-home disposal kits are available online.

She made these comments during Brownfield affiliate KNUJ’s Women In Ag Forum Thursday.

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