Oklahoma City Community College is a drug and alcohol and tobacco-free campus.
It is important for students to be aware that despite changing laws surrounding cannabis use in the state, Oklahoma City Community College prohibits the possession, use, or distribution of illicit drugs and alcohol by students and employees on its property and as part
of any activities held by the institution. You may read more about the full policy and how it impacts students, including penalties at the link below.
What is Prevention?
Prevention is a proactive approach to helping OCCC students, staff and faculty avoid substance use issues (with a focus on opioid & stimulant use) and addressing suicidality before they symptoms worsen.
Why is Prevention needed?
If alcohol and tobacco are included, 165 million, or 60.2% of Americans ages 12 years or older currently use drugs.
Although the rate of unintentional drug overdose deaths decreased 20% from 2016 to 2019 in Oklahoma, the rate increased 28% from 2019 to 2020
Oklahomans who have died by suicide increased 62% since 2006, when there were 544.
How does Prevention Work?
SAMHSA has created the Stategic Prevention Framework. This framework serves as a guide to implement evidence-based strategies in many environments.
Who Can Help?
Anyone! That is anyone who is in recovery, supported someone in recovery or wants to helps avert the need for recovery.If you have a passion for helping others and/or ideas for what can help on campus, the HEPS program always welcomes your participation in monthly coalition efforts in a judgment-free environment that is meant to foster compassion and reduce stigma.
Getting Help in An Emergency
If you are someone you care about, needs help with a mental health or substance use emergency do the following:
H.E.P.S. approach to Substance Use, Misuse, Abuse and Recovery
Modern prevention is much more person-centered than programs of the past.
OCCC’s HEPS program employs evidence-based efforts that tie to overall wellness and mental health to curb drug and alcohol dependency.
Protective factors are essential for college students to prevent substance use amidst the challenges of college life. Strong social support systems, including nurturing relationships with peers and family members, can reduce the need for substance use. Involvement in extracurricular activities and meaningful engagement on campus promote a positive identity and healthier lifestyle. Access to accurate information about substance use and its consequences empowers students to make informed decisions. Clear institutional policies and support services discourage substance use and provide necessary help. Developing effective coping skills equips students with alternatives to substance use, fostering resilience and healthy decision-making.
Safe Use, Storage & Disposal
Safely using, storing, and disposing of prescription medication is crucial for promoting public health and preventing misuse. Proper adherence to prescribed dosage and frequency ensures the intended therapeutic effects and reduces the risk of adverse reactions. Securely storing medications in locked cabinets or containers prevents unauthorized access, especially in households with children or individuals prone to substance abuse. Additionally, disposing of unused or expired medications through authorized drug take-back programs or following specific disposal guidelines protects the environment and reduces the chance of accidental ingestion or misuse by others. By prioritizing safe practices throughout the lifecycle of prescription medication, individuals can contribute to the overall well-being of themselves and their communities.
Reducing Stigma for Treatment
Reducing stigma surrounding treatment is crucial to promote early intervention and improve outcomes for individuals facing mental health or substance use challenges. Addressing stigma encourages individuals to seek help promptly, increasing the likelihood of successful treatment. Emphasizing the importance of early intervention helps prevent conditions from worsening and reduces the potential for long-term consequences. Moreover, fostering resource connectivity, such as accessible and comprehensive mental health services, helplines, and support groups, ensures individuals have the necessary support and guidance throughout their treatment journey. By combating stigma and promoting early intervention with robust resource connectivity, we can create an environment that prioritizes mental health and supports individuals in their path to recovery.
H.E.P.S. is a grant-funded program
Activities and efforts for the Higher Education Prevention Services Program are made possible by grant funds received from Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (ODMHSAS) and the Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).
Mental Health First Aid is a course that teaches you how to identify, understand and respond to signs of mental illnesses and substance use disorders. The training gives you the skills you need to reach out and provide initial help and support to someone who may be developing a mental health or substance use problem or experiencing a crisis.
If you are interested in becoming certified as a MHFAer, or a facilitator, please contact us below.
Mental Health First Aid
Safe storage, use, and disposal of materials, along with the availability of Narcan, are crucial aspects of promoting public health and reducing harm. In cases of opioid overdose, the availability of Narcan (naloxone) is vital. Narcan is an opioid antagonist that can rapidly reverse the effects of an overdose, providing a critical lifeline until emergency medical assistance arrives.
If you are interested in items that promote harm reduction, safe use, storage and disposal please contact us below.
FREE Safety Materials