Help Make Our Community a Better Place
Dear Community Member,

“Alone, we can do so little; together, we can do so much” – Helen Keller

As we continue on the path to schools reopening in the fall, Coalition Rx wants teachers, administrators, and students to know no matter the format, we will be here for you. We hope to still benefit students, and our community during these uncertain times.

We recommend following CDC guidelines during this time and If you are in an unsafe quarantine environment, help if available, here are several resources that can help:

National Domestic Violence Hotline 1-800-799-7233 or if you’re unable to speak safely, you can log onto or text LOVEIS to 22522

National Suicide Hotline 1-800-273-8255

Omaha Crime Stoppers 402-444-7867

Nebraska Regional Poison Center 1-800-222-1222

Please wear a mask, stay home and stay healthy!

Carey Pomykata
Executive Director, Coalition Rx

In The News
Alcohol and Drug Abuse Among African Americans
By Dr. Michael Kaliszewski, AAC
"The U.S. Bureau of the Census estimates that there are 44 million people of African origin living in the country, comprising 13.4% of the total population. African Americans are overrepresented among drug abusers in the United States, but they are also more likely to seek treatment for their drug addiction.

  •  Rates of substance abuse are slightly higher for African Americans (11.5%) than for Caribbean Blacks (9.6%).

  • Rates of substance use disorders are slightly higher for African Americans (4.9%) than for Caribbean Blacks (4.1%).

  • Rates of substance abuse are higher among African American women (6.3%) than Caribbean Black women (2.8%).

  • First-generation Caribbean Blacks are significantly less likely than African Americans to have a substance use disorder.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration reports that African Americans are just as likely to need substance abuse treatment as any other population. A recent study found that 9.1% of African Americans and 9.3% of persons from other racial and ethnic groups are in need of treatment for drug or alcohol use.

Unfortunately, research also shows that African Americans have lower rates of recovery from drug addiction following treatment. 6  To better meet the treatment needs of the African American community, there are several social and cultural factors that should be considered. "

Vaping-Related Lung Injuries Still Happening -- And May Look Like COVID-19
  By Serena Gordon, HD
"Reports of serious, even deadly, vaping-linked lung injuries dominated the headlines late last year, then COVID-19 took over the news.

But those lung injuries haven't gone away, and signs of e-cigarette or vaping product use-associated lung injury (EVALI) can look a lot like a COVID-19 infection, federal and state health officials warn.

"Teens didn't stop vaping because of COVID," said Dr. Jamie Garfield, a pulmonary care doctor in Philadelphia and volunteer spokeswoman for the American Lung Association. But doctors may not be looking for EVALI much anymore, she said. Garfield was not involved with the new study.

"When the prevalence of any disease is really high, everything that quacks like a duck is a duck, and in March and April, everything that sort of looked like COVID was COVID. This is where history-taking becomes very important. You have to know if a kid is vaping and what they're vaping," Garfield explained.

EVALI symptoms include:

  • Shortness of breath

  • Fever and chills

  • Cough

  • Vomiting

  • Diarrhea

  • Headache

  • Dizziness

  • Rapid heart rate and chest pain

Research into these cases strongly suggests that an additive called vitamin E acetate, which is sometimes used in pot-laced vapes, triggers EVALI, the CDC said.

According to the new CDC report, the eight California EVALI patients went to the hospital about four days after symptoms began. Their average age was 17. Six said they had vaped THC (the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana). Four of the teens needed intensive care and two needed mechanical ventilation to breathe. None tested positive for COVID-19, study author Dr. Christina Armatas, of the California Department of Public Health, and her colleagues noted.

Garfield agreed. "Vaping is not a safe alternative to smoking. Anything you put into your lungs besides clear air can increase your risk of lung injury," she said.

If you do vape, use only pre-packaged products and never anything that has been tampered with in any way, she advised. There are programs to help you quit, Garfield added."

The More You Know
For more information & a list of unsuitable hand sanitizers please check out the FDA website. Here
Coalition Rx Spotlight
We're excited to announce that we've added two part-time staff to our team!
Michelle Jankowski is our new Media/Data Collection Assistant and is a 2020 summer graduate of UNO with a Bachelor's of Science in Communication Studies and a minor in PR and Media Communications. She’s an avid hiker and enjoys the outdoors. She hopes to stay with Coalition RX for quite awhile, and would love to find more Communication centered opportunities in the future as she builds a career.
Laura Lenz, MA is our new Too Good For Drugs and Violence Program Facilitator. She graduated with her Bachelor's of Science in Child Protection Juvenile Justice from Bellevue University and recently graduated in May from BU with her Master's of Arts in Human Services. She is the mother of two children and has an array of hobbies in a creative field, and she plans on being a part of Coalition RX for quite a while.
We're excited to welcome both of them to the team!
Online Programming
If you are looking for educational and engaging activities for your kids during this time of social distancing Coalition Rx has you covered! We are working hard to transition our evidence-based programming into online lessons. We are currently posting one video per program a week on our Facebook page and website.

We're also working on Zoom lessons if parents, teachers or students are interested in joining please email and we will get some class times set up!

Below are just a few videos that we have created so far. More videos like these will be uploaded weekly!
Jacob Peterson, Strengthening Families 10-14, Everyone Gets Stressed
Tammie Dickens, Too Good for Drugs and Violence- Anger Managment Lesson
Help Reduce the Misuse of Substances of Abuse
We provide three evidence-based programs for youth and families. Strengthening Families Program 10-14, Too Good For Drugs and Violence K-8 and WISE. If you are interested in these programs please check out our Facebook page for the virtual lessons we have started in the wake of social distancing guidelines.
Each month Coalition Rx hosts a community meeting. We partner with local experts to discuss the substance abuse issues in our community and how we can combat this epidemic. Due to COVID-19 we are postponing all in-person meetings until restrictions are safely lifted.

Founded in 2015, our mission is to reduce the misuse of all substances of abuse by raising awareness and partnering with community organizations to provide public and professional education, prevention and treatment resources, and policy advocacy.
Carey Pomykata Executive Director
(402) 552-2221