IU Emergency Medicine’s Dr. Krista Brucker is on a mission to change the way patients who overdose on opioids are treated, ensuring they receive the same level of care as a gunshot wound victim or heart attack survivor. Along the way, she’s gained respect as one of the city’s most serious opioid fighters. Now, she’s trying to convince city officials to set up a needle exchange to avoid deadly—and costly—HIV and hepatitis C outbreaks. Will they listen to her before it’s too late?
Six months after an unprecedented HIV outbreak drew the world’s attention to the rural community, signs of hope emerge. Here, a series of profiles documents the lives of Austin residents coping with the crisis firsthand.