Unintentional drug overdoses caused the deaths of 2,482 Ohio residents in 2014, as compared to 2,110 in 2013. This is the highest number of deaths on record from drug overdose and reflects a 17.6 percent increase compared to 2013. Based on law enforcement drug seizures, Ohio has seen a major increase in drug reports involving fentanyl, a more lethal opiate that is 30 to 50 times more potent than heroin.
The key to reversing this trend is reducing the abuse of opiate prescriptions. The number of opioid doses dispensed to Ohio patients decreased by almost 42 million from 2012 to 2014. The state has increased funding to make Naxolone, a drug that reverses the effects of overdose, more available to those who need it. Ohio has modernized the way our drug courts function to help those who have made a mistake get back on their feet.
Not only in Ohio, but across the United States, drug abuse and addiction continues to be a pressing issue that costs the lives of many of our friends and family. However, in the last several years Ohio has been confronted with the major epidemic of prescription drug abuse (including opioids) which can lead to heroin addiction and death.
Unintentional drug overdose continued to be the leading cause of injury-related death in Ohio in 2014, ahead of motor vehicle traffic crashes - a trend which began in 2007. Unintentional drug overdoses caused the deaths of 2,482 Ohio residents in 2014 based on preliminary data.
This is the highest number of deaths on record from drug overdose and reflects a 17.6 percent increase compared to 2013 when there were 2,110 drug overdose deaths. The increased illicit use of a powerful opioid called fentanyl was a significant contributor to this rise in drug overdose deaths.
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DRUG ABUSE STATISTICS
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OVERDOSE EMERGENCY ROOM VISITS 2015 - 2016
OHIO'S FIGHT AGAINST OPIATE ABUSE AND DRUG OVERDOSES
Out of the 537 overdose ER visits from 2015 - 2016, 119 (22%) included drug-specific information. Most of these (98) specified heroin- or opioid-related overdoses, with 31 in 2015 and 67 in 2016. This is an over 100% increase in opioid/heroin-associated reporting.
From 2015 through 2016, there were 537 drug-related overdose ER visits in Medina County. Of these, 294 (55%) were male and 243 (45%) were female.
This brief provides an overview of overdose emergency room visits from January 1, 2015 to December 21, 2016. Emergency rooms serving Medina County residents treated an estimated 537 drug overdoses, with a rate of 1.5 overdoses per 1,000 people in the County. This data is based on chief complaints (not actual data) made by Medina County residents upon registration at any emergency room in Ohio. NOTE This data represents all overdoses, and not overdoses associated with any particular drug. Source: Medina County Health Department Data Brief
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Heroin, Fentanyl, Carfentanil: The Triple Threat on Our Doorstep
Ohio has one of the most aggressive and comprehensive approaches in the country to fighting the opioid epidemic. One billion dollars a year is allocated for prevention, treatment, and law enforcement. In spite of these efforts, Ohio leads the nation in death from opioid overdoses, with more than 4,000 lives lost to drug overdoses in 2016. This death rate is largely blamed on the easy availability of Fentanyl and Carfentanil in our communities.
It is estimated that 4 out of 5 heroin/fentanyl users started with prescription opioids. In 2015, 52,404 Americans died from a drug overdose - up from 37,004 in 2009. Prescription drugs were the leading cause until 2012 when surpassed by heroin. The National Survey on Drug Use & Health shows that 4.5 million Americans used prescription opiates recreationally in 2014.
The United States comprised less than 5% of the world's population, but consumes 80% of all the world's opioids and 99% of all the world's hydrocodone.