Jan. 25, 2019

New Tool to Fight Drug Abuse

To help continue efforts to fight prescription drug abuse, there is a new tool available for health care providers and the general public to report suspicious activity involving prescription medication.

The Suspicious Activity Report form, administered by the Office of Attorney General, gives an easy way for people to report fraudulent, stolen or altered prescriptions, or a suspicious doctor/pharmacy.

Tips can be submitted anonymously or with your contact information included for follow up from the Office of Attorney General’s Bureau of Narcotics Investigations .

The form and answers to frequently asked questions can be found here.
Federal Government Shutdown Affects Food Stamp Disbursement

Pennsylvania residents who receive help through food stamps – also known as the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program – should be aware of an important and temporary change enacted due to the federal government shutdown in Washington, D.C.

In an effort to ensure food stamp recipients have resources during the shutdown, Pennsylvania allocated February’s food stamp disbursement to recipients in January. They did not receive “extra” benefits. Rather, they simply received their benefits early to avoid the negative repercussions of the shutdown.

Food stamp recipients should therefore plan accordingly. The money they received in January needs to last them at least until March. While it’s always important for food stamp recipients to use that money responsibly and efficiently, that is especially true during this unique situation. Food stamp recipients should try to stretch their dollars as far as possible.

As the federal government shutdown lingers, I will continue to work with my colleagues in the state government to try as much as possible to help those negatively affected by the situation.
Safe2Say Tip Line Now Live

The statewide Safe2Say tip line designed to give students, teachers, parents and community members the ability to anonymously report potential threats and other problems is now live in Pennsylvania.

To report a possible dangerous or violent situation, individuals can call the state tip line at 844-723-2729. Tips can also be reported to safe2saypa.org or through the Safe2Say app on iPhone and Android devices.

The Safe2Say tip line gives students a way to share information without fear of repercussions or blame from their peers.

Individuals are encouraged to report physical or verbal assault and bullying, discussion about an upcoming planned attack on the school or a person, depression, excessive guilt or hopelessness, suicidal threats or self-harm, substance abuse, or social isolation or withdrawal.

The tip line was modeled after the Safe2Tell program in Colorado, which has received more than 30,000 reports since its inception in 2004, including reports of a planned school attack, suicidal threats and child abuse.
Flu Season is in Full Swing - It’s Not too Late for a Flu Shot

The winter brings the dreaded flu season, but there are many things you can do to keep yourself from getting sick.

The most effective way to prevent the flu is to get a flu shot. While it is January, there is still time to get one to protect yourself.

Along with getting the flu shot, people should make sure to wash their hands often, cover their mouth and nose when sneezing, avoid touching their face, and stay home if they are sick to avoid spreading the disease.

You can learn more about the flu and the vaccine here.