Published: Thu, March 08, 2018
Health Care | By Oscar Goodwin

Pa. sees 81 percent rise in ER visits for opioid overdoses

Pa. sees 81 percent rise in ER visits for opioid overdoses

The largest increase came in the Midwest, which saw 70 percent more overdoses.

Data released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Tuesday shows emergency room hospitalizations for opioid overdoses increased by 30 percent between the third quarters of 2016 and 2017 as opioid addiction continued its rapid spread throughout the population. In 2016 alone, opioids were the cause of almost 42,000 deaths across the country, more than any previous year on record.

Nationally, ER visits for suspected opioid overdoses went up for all regions, all age groups, men and women.

"Research shows that people who have had an overdose are more likely to have another".

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Between July 2016 and September 2017, data showed there was a 30 percent increase in overdoses across the nation. "So we think there probably is not an increase in people using drugs, but there is an increase in the danger associated with a single use". Through the same point in 2017, there were 47 overdose deaths - roughly a 23 percent increase year over year.

Eight states from three USA regions reporting substantial increases-25 percent or greater-in the rate of opioid overdose ED visits.

That's partly because many overdoses occur away from hospitals.

"We want there to be warm handoffs in the emergency department between resuscitation or saving a life and addressing the longer term needs for that individual and their support system", Schuchat said.

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The sharp increases and variation across states and counties indicate the need for better coordination to address overdose outbreaks spreading across county and state borders. The response plan includes allowing emergency room doctors to start overdose survivors in medication. States in the region, including OH and MI, were already among those with the highest opioid death rates.

The other states in the study were Indiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Missouri, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina and Ohio, Rhode Island and West Virginia.

"There's a lot more we can do", he said. Kentucky, meanwhile, reported a statistically significant decrease (15%).

The rate rose most in the Midwest - 70 percent, including a 65 percent hike in IL.

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