BLOOMFIELD, Conn., 30 August, 2016 - Cigna (NYSE: CI) continues its work to raise awareness of the country’s opioid epidemic – and creating a path to improve treatment and prevention. It is sponsoring a two-city tour of NPR Generation Listen: America’s Opioid Epidemic September 1 in Atlanta and September 19 in Chicago.
Generation Listen is NPR through a millennial lens. It’s the leaders of tomorrow forging connections around NPR’s mission to create an informed public. NPR’s listening parties are intimate gatherings where the audience listens to thought-provoking stories, discusses ideas surfaced through these stories, and meets like-minded people interested in addressing issues such as the opioid epidemic.
The Atlanta listening party on September 1 will be free to the public and held at The Loft, 1374 West Peachtree Street Northwest. The program will be hosted by NPR reporter Kelly McEvers, with special guest journalist and author Maia Szalavitz. For information or to register for the forum, visit https://nprlisteningparty-opioid.splashthat.com/.
The audience will listen to NPR reports from the frontlines of the opioid epidemic. McEvers will then kick off a conversation with Szalavitz, and the audience will be invited to share personal reflections, stories, questions and ideas to better understand how to prevent, treat and communicate about substance use disorders.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has found that prescription opioid overdose rates between 1999 and 2014 were highest among people between the ages of 25 and 54. “The challenges with opioid misuse cut across generations. The millennial generation has been hard hit, but it is important to recognize they have the potential to help reverse this crisis for themselves and friends, as well as older generations and the generation of the future,” said David M. Cordani, Cigna president and chief executive officer.
After the program is over, Cordani will wrap up the evening in a discussion with Loren Mayor, NPR’s chief operating officer.
Cigna is working to eliminate the stigma associated with substance use disorders so that people can find the help they need. The company is taking steps to reduce its customers’ opioid use by 25 percent. To achieve this goal, Cigna is tapping into its extensive experience with prevention, wellness and chronic disease management programs, and is working with clients, physicians and others to develop ways to increase prevention and treatment of substance use disorders.
In May, Cigna also announced its collaboration with the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM), in which Cigna furnished customer claims data to ASAM to test and validate three performance measures related to addiction treatment. The goal is to verify what works in the treatment of patients with addiction, make the medical community aware of proven strategies, and hasten the adoption of these successful methods.
The Cigna Foundation has provided $200,000 in World of Difference grants to Shatterproof, a non-profit organization committed to ending substance use disorders, and gave $50,000 to make naloxone – a life-saving drug that reverses the effects of a drug overdose – available for use by first responders in Pennsylvania. Cigna also works with Stamp Out Stigma, an initiative spearheaded by the Association for Behavioral Health and Wellness, to change perceptions and reduce the stigma of mental illness and substance use disorders.
For more information on Cigna's leadership in addressing the country’s drug crisis, please visit here.
Cigna Corporation (NYSE: CI) is a global health service company dedicated to helping people improve their health, well-being and sense of security. All products and services are provided exclusively by or through operating subsidiaries of Cigna Corporation, including Connecticut General Life Insurance Company, Cigna Health and Life Insurance Company, Life Insurance Company of North America and Cigna Life Insurance Company of New York. Such products and services include an integrated suite of health services, such as medical, dental, behavioral health, pharmacy, vision, supplemental benefits, and other related products including group life, accident and disability insurance. Cigna maintains sales capability in 30 countries and jurisdictions, and has more than 90 million customer relationships throughout the world. To learn more about Cigna®, including links to follow us on Facebook or Twitter, visit www.cigna.com.