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Newport Hospital to Host Opiate and Heroin Overdose Forum


Forum will bring together state and local experts to address the overdose epidemic 

WHAT: Newport Hospital is bringing together state and local experts to address the ongoing opiate and heroin overdose epidemic that is affecting Rhode Island. Participants include:

  • Fred Trapassi, Jr., vice president, Phoenix House
  • Frank Spicola, director, SSTAR of North Kingstown
  • Craig Stenning, director, Department of Behavioral Healthcare, Developmental Disabilities and Hospitals  (BHDDH)
  • James Gillen, director, Anchor Recovery Community Center
  • Michael Rizzi, CEO, CODAC Behavioral Healthcare
  • Elise Reynolds, mother of an overdose victim
  • Tom Coderre, moderator

WHEN: Monday, May 19, 5 to 6:30 p.m. 

WHERE: Newport Hospital, 11 Friendship Street, Newport, RI 

WHY: As of mid-April, 85 people in Rhode Island have died from overdose. This forum will cover the steps individuals, families, friends, community groups and all Aquidneck Islanders can take to help those struggling with addiction and how they can help to prevent overdose deaths from prescription pain killers and heroin.  

CONTACT: For more information, email Dr. Jon Brett at

OTHER:**The forum at Newport Hospital will be followed by a showing of Anonymous People – The Documentary, which is an independent feature documentary about the over 23 million Americans living in long-term recovery from alcohol and other drug addictions. It is sponsored by RI Cares and will be shown at 7 p.m. at the Jane Pickens Theatre.