JAMESTOWN – A state-certified substance abuse counselor, who owns and operates a Buffalo consulting company designed to help drug addicts find recovery, says the medical community is learning more about the long term effects opiates have on kids who were born addicted.
“We are noticing that, as the children are progressing to Pre-K, that there are language development delays and some cognitive processing disorders,” said Dr. Davina Moss-King, who was the featured speaker at a conference held Friday at UPMC Chautauqua WCA Hospital.
Dr. Moss-King’s primary focus for research is women’s/children’s health, along with creating coping mechanisms and lifestyle changes for women using substances that are harmful, according to her official website.
In 2009, Dr. Moss-King published a book called Unresolved Grief and Loss Issues Related to Heroin Recovery along with a Continuing Education course regarding women.
“We are trying very hard to educate individuals early,” said Moss-King.
The turnout for Friday’s conference, which included doctors from around Western New York and members of the treatment community in Jamestown, exceeded one hundred individuals.
“The response (from the community) has been phenomenal,” said Moss-King. “Originally, a couple of weeks ago, we had 20 individuals that were registered to be participants in our training. Today, we had 105.”
The purpose of the conference was to create treatment plans for county officials who are dealing with the aftermath of a worldwide drug epidemic that now includes the very addictive methamphetamine.
“Methamphetamine has thrown a curve ball, but what we are looking at is how did it start, how are we able to treat the mom, and how are we able to create a treatment plan that is going to be effective for her as well as the infant,” said Moss-King.
Dr. Moss-King said that the county has seen more positive toxicology screens for methamphetamine in pregnant women.
County Executive George Borrello spoke at Friday’s conference about impacts that drug addiction has on our communities.
Borrello shared that the incidence of opioid addiction in new borns in Chautauqua County is three times the state average.