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CDC Study Finds Rise in Emergency Department Visits for Opioid Overdose

Thursday, March 15, 2018  
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CDC Study Finds Rise in Emergency Department Visits for Opioid Overdose
The CDC released a Vital Signs report on the latest data on opioid overdoses treated in emergency departments (ED) across the United States from July 2016 through September 2017. The study found that data from CDC's National Syndromic Surveillance Program (NSSP) Biosense platform showed opioid overdose rates increased an average of 30% in 52 jurisdictions in 45 states. The entire US experienced rate increases, but the Midwest showed a 70% increase, while the Southeast had the lowest rate increase with 14%. Opioid overdoses also increased for men (30%) and women (24%) and across all age groups an average of 33%.

Eight states reported substantial increases of 25% or greater in opioid overdose emergency department visits. Large cities had a 54% increase in overdoses. The CDC report offered a list of recommendations such as naloxone training for a patient's family and friends in order to combat overdoses. The report also recommended connecting patients with hospital case managers or peer navigators to link them to follow-up treatment and services. Local health departments (LHD) are recommended to alert the community to the rapid increase in opioid overdoses seen in emergency departments and ensure adequate naloxone supplies are available. The report also suggests that local health departments should coordinate with key community groups to detect and respond to any changes in illicit drug use.