Bentonville, Arkansas-based Walmart marked the start of National Substance Abuse Prevention Month and National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month with the launch of a new website that is an interactive learning solution with access to prescription drug safety and mental health resources. Safe & Well is free to anyone through Walmart’s relationship with leading social-impact education innovator Everfi Inc.
Prescription drug misuse and mental health challenges have been exacerbated in recent months as the COVID-19 crisis has increased stress and social isolation. A recent CDC survey found nearly 31 percent of respondents reported symptoms of anxiety or depression, and 13 percent said they had started or increased substance use “to cope with stress or emotions related to COVID-19.”
Walmart’s new wellness resource provides associates, patients, caregivers and community members with necessary information to better understand the risks of prescription medication misuse and the connections to mental health.
“We are seeing people struggle with unprecedented levels of personal stress and restricted access to support networks in communities across the country as a result of the pandemic, which can ultimately compromise health and many other important aspects of people’s lives. Our hope is that the new Safe & Well tool will be an accessible and valuable source of information for people at risk of prescription drug misuse and those who care about them,” said Dr. Thomas Van Gilder, Walmart’s chief medical officer.
Safe & Well uses videos, interactive scenarios and self-guided activities covering topics like:
- Reading and understanding a prescription bottle label and medication guide;
- Responsible use, storage and disposal of prescription medication;
- Recognizing opioid misuse and opioid use disorder;
- Mental health awareness;
- Strategies for seeking support for a mental health challenge; and
- Coping techniques.
“Our country is at a crossroads with declining life expectancy due to suicide and drug overdoses,” said Jon Chapman, co-founder and president of Everfi. “Mental wellness and prescription drug misuse are impacting communities across the country and there has never been a more critical time to focus on investing in the health of these communities. These issues are intertwined and not only can addressing them improve the economy of a community, but it can truly save a life by providing consumers with the information they need in the moment they need it.”
The extension of this offering is part of Walmart’s commitment to providing associates and community members with prevention education and resources to live healthier lives. This work is made available through its strategic partnership with Everfi and the Prescription Drug Safety Network.
Walmart joined the Prescription Drug Safety Network, a national coalition committed to empowering Americans with the skills and knowledge to make safe decisions about prescription medications through digital education, in 2017. Through its work with the Prescription Drug Safety Network, Walmart has been able to bring this critical education to more than 45,000 high school students across the United States.
Safe & Well can be found by visiting walmart.everfi-next.net.