CDC: Opioid overdoses kill nearly 5 people every hour in the US

09 March, 2018, 09:47 | Author: Otis Hoffman
  • Opioid overdoses seen in hospital emergency rooms are way up. Timely treatment with naloxone can reverse the effects of opioids

The largest regional increase occurred in the Midwest, which saw a 69.7 percent jump in opioid overdoses, according to the report.

Emergency rooms around the country saw a spike in patients overdosing on opioids a year ago, according to data collected by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and released Tuesday.

The 142,557 emergency visits in 45 states marked a almost 30 percent increase between July 2016 and September 2017, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced Tuesday.

Some decreases were seen in five states, with Kentucky experiencing the most significant decrease of 15 percent.

The opioid crisis seemed to be worsening most quickly in Wisconsin, where 109 percent more people went to the emergency room for an overdose in September 2017 than did in July 2016.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the nation is in the grip of a fast-moving epidemic for which there are no easy solutions. There were 45 heroin-related deaths and 66 overdoses from opioids.

The programs software collects data on more than 60 percent of all emergency room visits across the U.S. in 45 states.

But the opioid epidemic also fueled increased overdose rates in the West (40 percent), Northeast (21 percent), Southwest (20 percent), and Southeast (14 percent).

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The ER data show trends in the opioid abuse epidemic before deaths do, said Dr. Anne Schuchat, acting director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which conducted the study. "It is rare for a person to die due to the accidental overdose of a single drug", East Baton Rouge Parish's Coroner William "Beau" Clark wrote in his report.

There's more bad news about the country's staggering opioid epidemic.

"The heroin and illicit drug supply has gotten even more risky than it used to be", she said, adding that the drugs are so toxic that paramedics and police are at risk of poisoning themselves.

The reported overdoes were not all fatal, and health officials say the ED data can act as an "early warning system for health departments to identify increases in opioid overdoses more quickly and coordinate response efforts".

Today - two new reports about opioids.

"What happens when you do that, without decreasing the demand for opioids?"

Overdoses increased in all five regions of the United States, and in every demographic.

The study comes just a week after the White House held a week-long opioid summit. Others say one key could be training emergency room doctors and nurses to make sure addicts get help to break their addiction.



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