Oklahoma Opioid Deaths Continue To Rise

A man injects heroin into his arm at Kurt Cobain Memorial Park in Aberdeen Wash. on June 13. The U.S. government says non-fatal overdoses visits to hospital emergency rooms were up about 30 per cent late last summer compared to the same three-month per

"Opioid overdoses increased for men and women, all age groups, and all regions", said the report. "So (there would be) a person in the emergency department whose job it is to follow up with the person after they're awake, after they're home to make sure that they do get connected and potentially help link them with medically assisted - medication assisted treatment a few days out".

Previously, the agency looked at death from opioids, which lag behind reports from emergency rooms. In the first nine months of 2017, the state had 609 opioid deaths, a 5 percent decrease from the same period in 2016. Northeast states such as DE (105%), Pennsylvania (81%), and ME (34%) also reported significant increases, as well as Southeast state North Carolina (31%).

The report found that urban centers saw a greater increase in overdose visits than rural areas, which have traditionally been seen as the hardest hit by the nation's opioid epidemic. For midwestern regions, this percentage jumped even higher to 70 percent.

"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. Opioid overdoses in large central metropolitan areas increased by 54%.

CDC also examined data from the National Syndromic Surveillance Program (NSSP) BioSense platform, using ESSENCE (Electronic Surveillance System for the Early Notification of Community-based Epidemics) software.

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Hospitalizations for overdoses rose by 69.7 percent in the Midwest, 40.3 percent in the West, 21.3 percent in the Northeast and 20.2 percent in the Southwest.

The data reports that, from the same time frame as the ESOOS Program report, all 5 United States regions experienced increases in overdose rates. "Closer coordination between public health and public safety can serve to address changes in the illicit opioid supply and use of illicit opioids, which affects overdose rates", she continued. He also calls for increasing the availability of naloxone, which reverses the effects of overdoses, and working with law enforcement.

Support programs that reduce harms which can occur when injecting opioids, including those that offer screening for HIV and hepatitis B and C, in combination with referral to treatment. The CDC now recommends against using opioids for chronic pain.

"People who have had an overdose are more likely to have another, so being seen in the ED is an opportunity for action", the report 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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