Substance Use

Substance use is consistently identified as a top health issue in Wisconsin as a whole and Winnebago County specifically. Currently, areas of specific local concern include, but are not limited to, opiate use, the drinking culture, and youth tobacco use. WCHD supports efforts that work on preventing use, reducing harm from use, and increasing access to treatment.


Breakwater Coalition

Breakwater, a substance use prevention coalition with backbone support from WCHD, has been formed to address substance use and misuse. Currently the action teams are focused on treatment/recovery, prevention/awareness, data collection, and communication. Using this new approach offers the opportunity for more involvement from the community and the ability to continue the vital work the original Task Force set out to accomplish.


Winnebago County Overdose Fatality Review Team

Winnebago County was one of six counties selected to receiving funding, training, and support to develop a drug overdose fatality review program. The program consists of a county-wide partnership across sectors that leverages inter-agency data sharing and practitioner expertise to review fatal drug overdoses. The program seeks to identify strategies for prevention and intervention that address the problem of drug use and overdose in Winnebago County.


Substance Use Harm Reduction
  • Narcan: Narcan, also known as naloxone, is used in opioid overdoses to counteract life-threatening depression of the central nervous system and respiratory system, allowing an overdose victim to breathe normally. Naloxone is a nonscheduled (i.e., non-addictive), prescription medication. Naloxone only works if a person has opioids in their system; the medication has no effect if opioids are absent.

-  Narcan, also known as naloxone, is a medication that reverses an opioid overdose.

-  If given to someone overdosing on opioids it can save their life.

-  No harm or effect will be had on a person if they are given Narcan when not overdosing from opiates.

Narcan is available, free of charge, at the Winnebago County Health Department in Oshkosh, 112 Otter Avenue (Second Floor). Learn more here.

  • LifePoint: LifePoint is a syringe services program aimed at reducing the transmission of HIV and Hepatitis C and other potential harms associated with injection drug use. WCHD is a satellite location for Vivent Health's Lifepoint program. WCHD now offers fentanyl test strips. Lifepoint is free and available during business hours at the Oshkosh location.

- Learn about the initiatives between Outagamie and Winnebago Counties to increase safe sharps disposal.


Medicine Disposal (Drug Drop)

Winnebago County residents can dispose unwanted medication at any of the four permanent drug drop sites located at local Police Departments: Fox Crossing, Menasha, Neenah, and Oshkosh. WCHD provides support for these drug drop boxes through promotion of all sites and participation in periodic drug sorts at the Oshkosh Police Department.  




Learn more about WCHD initiatives specific to Mental Health.
Back to Mental Health and Substance Use Initiatives.