U.S. opioid addiction crisis continues, with impacts felt locally


Country-wide, opioid addiction numbers are skyrocketing. They rose by 493% from 2010 to 2016, according to Blue Cross Blue Shield.

In D.C., there were 209 opioid-related overdose deaths in 2016, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. That's a rate of 30 deaths per 100,000 persons , more than double the national rate of 13.3 deaths per 100,000 persons.

Newly released figures from Maryland's health department show there were 2,282 intoxication deaths in 2017, nearly 90 percent of which were opioid-related. That was a record-high number of drug deaths for the state.

And in Virginia, there were 1,130 opioid-related overdose deaths in 2016. Since 2010, the number of heroin-related overdose deaths has increased from 45 to 450 deaths—a tenfold increase, per the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Overdose deaths related to synthetic opioids have increased even more dramatically, from 87 to 648 deaths.

Earlier this year, U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams issued the office's first national public health advisory in 13 years, calling on more Americans to start carrying the overdose drug naloxone and urging more federal funds to be dedicated to increasing antidote access on local levels.

ABC 7 On Your Side held an addiction prevention phone bank on Wednesday, August 1, with experts from the following organizations. Please click on their names to visit their websites for more information on how to prevent opioid addiction.

Addition Policy Forum

Phoenix House

Chris Atwood Foundation

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