Hospital visits for opioid overdoses rose 30 percent nationwide — CDC report

Ebony Scott
March 8, 2018

"The increases in overdoses were seen in adults of all age groups".

Opioid overdoses experienced another dramatic spike over the past year across every region of the country, according to a report from federal health officials.

Research shows people who have overdosed once are likely to do so again, making the ER a gateway for connecting people with treatment, Schuchat said.

New federal data show that IL emergency rooms saw a 66 percent increase in opioid overdose visits past year. The continued increase in overdoses amid a coordinated effort to bring down opioid deaths is a troubling sign of the stubborn stranglehold of addiction. The state had more than 600 opioid deaths during the first nine months of 2017, a 5 percent decrease compared to that same period in 2016.

Jennifer Miller, a spokeswoman for the state Department of Health Services, said many suspected opioid overdoses in ERs don't become confirmed cases.

"The potency and toxicity of what's on the street is very high right now", said Schuchat.

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In the southeast, including Kentucky, West Virginia and North Carolina, there was a 14 percent increase. Emergency room overdoses also jumped 40% in the West, 21% in the Northeast-tied to increases of 105% in DE and 81% in Pennsylvania-20% in the Southwest, and 14% in the Southeast. Closer coordination between public health and public safety agencies can support identification of changes in supply and use of illicit opioids, further allowing communities to take appropriate action to reduce opioid overdoses.

"The science is clear: addiction is a chronic disease and not a moral failing".

"Even with the declines we've seen in the past few years, (opioid prescriptions) are still three times higher in the United States than in Europe".

"The sharp increases and variation across states and counties indicate the need for better coordination and readiness for regional or multiple state outbreaks", she said.

"We wanted more timely information", Schuchat says. Other states in the Eastern region, such as Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island, showed nonsignificant decreases of less than 10%.

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