SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — Heather Lyons-Burney is taking on the war on opioid abuse in the Ozarks. She’s a pharmacist, who doesn’t stay behind the counter.
Lyons-Burney, PHARM. D., is an assistant clinical professor at UMKC’s satellite campus at Missouri State University. Her students see her real work being done outside the classroom.
“They can see that anyone can do this, Lyons-Burney said. “I just have a passion for something, and I’ve grabbed onto it, and I’ve helped pull other people along.”
After her residency at Cox Health, she moved to Branson and started to focus on prescription drug misuse and abuse.
“If people can’t get access to affordable health care, what are they going to look at for alternatives for maybe mental illness, pain issues, or that sort of thing?” Lyons-Burney said.
In 2010, she was part of a group that founded Faith Community Health Clinic in Branson, an affordable care clinic for people who don’t have insurance.
“We made sure that our dispensary, and our policy, was that we would not provide controlled substances or narcotics,” Lyons-Burney said. “We felt that there were other alternatives to pain management that we could recommend.
She’s also an advocate for a statewide prescription drug monitoring program and helped pass a county-wide PDMP in Taney County.
“Let’s identify the problem before