Wednesday, 12 December, 2018

Kentucky sees decrease in ER visits related to opioid overdoses

ER visits for opioid overdose up 30%, CDC study finds Opioid epidemic worsens: Wisconsin reports 108 percent rise in overdose rate
Ben Pena | 07 March, 2018, 19:56

America's opioid epidemic is getting worse, not better, according to an alarming new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

According to NPR, the data allows the most current look at opioid overdoses in the country and is based on such visits seen in 92 hospital emergency rooms from the July 2016 to September 2017.

The regions particularly hit hard were Wisconsin (108.6 percent), DE (105 percent), Pennsylvania (80.6 percent), and IL (65.5 percent).

According to the report, ME saw a 25-49 percent increase in the same time period.

That's not to say they're the sole region affected by the opioid epidemic.

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In the Northeast, opioid overdose emergency room visits rose by 105 percent in DE and 81 percent in Pennsylvania. But some states, such as Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island showed a slight decrease.

In the Southeast, which at 14 percent had the lowest regional increase in overdose visits, Kentucky reported a statistically significant decrease of 15 percent. Highest rate increases (54 percent) were in large central metropolitan areas (a population of 1 million or more and covering a principal city). This trend held true for both men and women of all age groups. "It does not respect state or county lines and is still increasing in every region in the United States".

The data reports that, from the same time frame as the ESOOS Program report, all 5 U.S. regions experienced increases in overdose rates. It is typical to see overdose increases at the start of the month, when many people get their paychecks, but the spikes could also be due to growing fentanyl use, he said. While calling for increased funding for addiction treatment, Kolodny compares the Trump administration's labeling of the crisis as an emergency to a person pointing out a house on fire, "then not calling the fire department".

Data from ER visits, rather than overdose deaths, is useful because they show when and where people are overdosing, information states can use to identify where resources are needed, said Dr. Anne Schuchat, acting CDC director, in a conference call Tuesday with reporters.

"Emergency department education and post-overdose protocols, including providing naloxone and linking people to treatment, are critical needs", Vivolo-Kantor said. "Data on opioid overdoses treated in emergency departments can inform timely, strategic, and coordinated response efforts in the community as well".

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