Ohio Hospital Newswire


Annual Drug Overdose Report Shows 8-Year Low in Prescription Opioid Deaths, 4-Year Low in Heroin Deaths in Ohio




Prescription opioid-related overdose deaths have reached an eight-year low and heroin-related overdose deaths are at a four-year low, according to a new report released Thursday by the Ohio Department of Health. However, deadly Fentanyl mixed and used with other street drugs is now driving Ohio’s unintentional overdose deaths—4,854 in 2017.

According to the report, the number of prescription opioid-related overdose deaths declined 7 percent from 2016 to 2017 and declined nearly 28 percent from 2011 to 2017.

“This decline in prescription opioid deaths corresponded with Ohio’s efforts to reduce the prescription opioid supply available for diversion, which has included putting in place prescribing guidelines, strengthening prescription drug monitoring, stepping up enforcement efforts and developing new regulations for drug wholesalers,” ODH stated in the news release. “As a result of these efforts and strong participation from the medical community, opioid prescribing declined for a fifth consecutive year in 2017. Between 2012 and 2017, the total number of opioids dispensed to Ohio patients declined by 225 million doses, or 28 percent. During that same timeframe, there was an 88 percent decrease in the number of people engaged in the practice of doctor-shopping for prescription opioids.”
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