SOURCE: Maryland Public Television

Maryland Public Television

January 24, 2017 16:11 ET

More than two dozen broadcasters join Maryland Public TV in landmark simulcast of heroin program

Program focuses on the fight against the region's opioid epidemic

OWINGS MILLS, MD--(Marketwired - January 24, 2017) - Maryland Public Television (MPT) will premiere a new program, Breaking Heroin's Grip: Road to Recovery, on Saturday, February 11 at 7 p.m. The hour-long television event, consisting of a 40-minute documentary and 20-minute live phone bank program, will air on nearly 30 television and radio stations (list appears below) in Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Washington, D.C., either simultaneously with MPT's telecast or shortly thereafter. This unprecedented simulcast is designed to reach tens of thousands of regional viewers.

Produced by MPT in association with the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene's Behavioral Health Administration, Breaking Heroin's Grip: Road to Recovery examines stories of three Maryland residents in rural and urban settings with an opioid use disorder. Rather than focusing on the criminal and legal aspects of the users' stories, the MPT program instead concentrates on the subjects' individual struggles and recovery from addiction.

"Heroin is destroying lives in Maryland and throughout our nation -- from the smallest town to the biggest city," said Governor Larry Hogan. "Lt. Governor Boyd Rutherford and I have been committed to fighting this crisis since before we took office and will continue to use every resource at our disposal to address this epidemic in a coordinated effort -- from law enforcement to treatment -- and provide our citizens with the much-needed resources and support they need."

The program also will be streamed on a special website,, created to provide public access to information, the state's crisis hotline, and resources to assist active users and their families in obtaining help. The website will offer two more video segments not included in the broadcast featuring firsthand accounts of the region's heroin problem. Following the broadcast, the documentary also will be available on the same website and MPT's YouTube channel.

Throughout the evening and at the documentary's conclusion, a live phone bank (1-800-422-0009) -- staffed by Behavioral Health Administration crisis hotline team members -- will receive calls from addicted individuals, family members, or friends to provide immediate information and assistance that may lead to treatment and recovery.

Individuals who need help finding resources for substance related disorder treatment also can visit Treatment facilities, listed by location and program characteristics, can be found at this link.

MPT news anchor Jeff Salkin will be joined by WBAL-TV news anchor/reporter Jason Newton, to host the one-hour broadcast and phone bank outreach event.

The Breaking Heroin's Grip: Road to Recovery broadcast simulcast was arranged with member stations of the Maryland, DC, Delaware Broadcasters Association (MDCD), an industry group representing public and commercial radio and television across Maryland, the District of Columbia, and Delaware. The telecast is also being supported by print journalist members of the Maryland-Delaware-DC Press Association (MDDC), an Annapolis-based association of more than 100 member publications and wire services. Participating MDDC member newspapers will provide localized coverage of the opioid problem in their own communities.

About MPT
Launched in 1969 and headquartered in Owings Mills, MD, Maryland Public Television is a nonprofit, state-licensed public television network and member of the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS). MPT's six transmitters cover Maryland plus portions of contiguous states and the District of Columbia. Frequent winner of regional Emmy® awards, MPT creates local, regional, and national television shows. Beyond broadcast, MPT's commitment to professional educators, parents, caregivers, and learners of all ages is delivered through year-round instructional events and the super-website Thinkport, which garners in excess of 14 million page views annually. MPT's community engagement connects viewers with local resources on significant health, education, and public interest topics through year-round outreach events, viewer forums, program screenings, and phone bank call-in opportunities.

Opioid addiction experts are available for interviews.
Breaking Heroin's Grip: Road to Recovery documentary screeners are available upon request. A media resource toolkit is available at


 WBAL-TV / Baltimore, MD  WBAL-AM / Baltimore, MD
 WJZ-TV / Baltimore, MD  WYPR-FM / Baltimore, MD
 WMAR-TV / Baltimore, MD  WJZ-FM / Baltimore, MD
 WNUV-TV / Baltimore, MD  WLIF-FM / Baltimore, MD
 WRDE-TV / Lewes, DE  WOLB-AM / Baltimore, MD
 WHAG-TV / Hagerstown, MD  WWMX-FM / Baltimore, MD
 WMDT-TV / Salisbury, MD  WHFC-FM / Bel Air, MD
 WHUT-TV / Washington, DC  WJEJ-AM / Hagerstown, MD
 WUSA-TV / Washington, DC  WPTX-AM / Lexington Park, MD
 WITF-TV and WITF-FM / Harrisburg, PA  WTHU-AM / Thurmont, MD
 WVPB-TV / Charleston, WV  WKHS-FM / Worton, MD
 WMPH-FM / Wilmington, DE  WOL-AM / Washington, DC
 WRNR-FM / Annapolis, MD  WPRS-FM / Washington, DC
 WNAV-AM /Annapolis, MD   

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