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

New data shows increase in overdose-related emergency visits in Delaware

Data from emergency departments (EDs) show that the US opioid overdose epidemic continues to worsen, according to the latest Vital Signs report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The report found that from July 2016 to September 2017, a total of 142,557 emergency room visits were due to suspected opioid overdoses.

The data show that opioid overdoses increased for men and women, all age groups, and all regions, but varied by state, with differences also between rural and urban populations.

However, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island are among states showing a decrease in such visits, according to the CDC data.

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The CDC called for addiction prevention education, improved treatment efforts in the emergency rooms and greater access to services that can help people recover, such as medication-assisted treatment.

Emergency rooms across the United States saw a big jump in overdoses from opioids previous year - the latest evidence the country's drug crisis is worsening.

That rate of increase was the third highest in the country, behind only Wisconsin, where overdose cases went up 109 percent, and DE, where they went up 105 percent.

The largest regional increase occurred in the Midwest, which saw a 69.7 percent jump in opioid overdoses, according to the report.

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"This is a very hard and fast-moving epidemic and there are no easy solutions", said Dr. Anne Schuchat, acting director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

"We think that the number of people addicted to opioids is relatively stable".

That analysisshowed a 34.5 percent increase between the same periods in 2016 and 2017. "The margin of error for taking one of these substances is small now and people may not know what they have". But only that of Kentucky, with a 15 percent decrease, is considered statistically significant.

However, the CDC says it's seeing its highest-ever opioid-related death rates.

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