Cathy Ferree, President and CEO of Indiana State Museum and Historic Sites, shares how museums can serve as public health educators. She also gives us the scoop on one of her most talked-about achievements, FIX: Heartbreak and Hope Inside Our Opioid Crisis, a daring exhibit tied to the state of Indiana’s initiative to break the stigma surrounding opioid use disorder.

Highlights include:

7:08 – CF: “When you look at developing an experience, it’s really important, particularly one that is this complicated, that you have people who have good experience around how to message, how to engage people, how to invite them in.”

10:18 – CF: “What’s important about this exhibition is that we made sure that there were multiple entry points because all of us learn differently and have different interests. And when you’re in a family group, it’s likely that all four or five of you think or look at things a little differently. So you will notice it’s not a linear exhibition but we have taken each and every sort of area of interest. We have a giant brain, which is one of the iconic pieces that really shows you what happens to your synapses when you are on opioids. So it can better help people understand the real science behind this disease.”

14:05 – CF: “We had 16 very courageous people who came forward to tell their stories so that we can put a face to what it means to have substance abuse disorder. This could be your aunt. It could be your sister. It could be your teacher, your principal, your doctor, or lawyer. Substance use disorder does not discriminate.”

22:58 – CF: “The other thing we ask you to do is to reach out to someone because we hope, now that you have a better understanding and build empathy and maybe start to recognize that there may be someone in your world who might need a hand. And hopefully that if we come together and help each other, we won’t end up in an overdose situation or even in a substance abuse disorder situation. So we’re really asking people to reach out to one another.”

23:35 – CF: “We ask that you be trained on Narcan because we do believe and know that it saves lives and it is very light – you can keep it in your car, you can keep it in your purse. It’s a way that we can all help make a difference.”

Leading with Health is hosted by Jennifer Michelle. Jennifer has a Master’s in Public Health and Epidemiology and is a former EMT. As President of Michelle Marketing Strategies, Jennifer specializes in healthcare marketing. She is on a mission to create a healthcare system that actually cares about the patients and the providers.