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International Overdose Awareness Day

While the information contained in this news article was current and accurate when we posted it, it may not necessarily represent current WVOEMS policy or procedure. If you have any questions, please contact our office at 304-558-3956.

Posted: Tuesday, September 4, 2018 1:03 PM

Dear Colleague,


In conjunction with this year's International Overdose Awareness Day, CDC has released the 2018 Annual Surveillance Report of Drug-Related Risks and Outcomes - United States that shows the effects of the prescription and illicit drug crisis impacting the nation. The data show the latest information available on the drug epidemic in America, including various health outcomes, health behaviors, prescribing patterns, overdose, and death.


The surveillance report pulls four types of data from four different data sources, including opioid prescribing, drug misuse and substance abuse disorder, nonfatal hospitalizations and emergency department visits, and drug overdose mortality.

Key data from the report:

  • In 2017, providers wrote more than 58 prescriptions for every 100 people in the United States.
  • In 2016, 48.5 million people used illicit drugs (like marijuana, cocaine (including crack), heroin, hallucinogens, inhalants, or methamphetamine) or misused prescription drugs (like pain relievers, tranquilizers, stimulants, or sedatives).
  • In 2015, almost 320,000 Americans were hospitalized for nonfatal, unintentional drug poisonings.
  • A record number of drug overdose deaths happened in 2016, with more than 63,000 Americans dying. More than 66% of drug overdose deaths involved a prescription or illicit opioid.


This week, our program also released a new MMWR, " Opportunities to prevent Overdose Deaths involving prescription and illicit opioids, 11 states, July 2016-June 2017." This report describes opioid overdose deaths in 11 states within CDC's Enhanced State Opioid Overdose Surveillance (ESOOS) program. The report examines overdose deaths that tested positive for prescription opioids (including oxycodone and hydrocodone), illicit opioids (including heroin, illicitly manufactured fentanyl, and fentanyl analogs), and a combination of both prescription and illicit opioids. The report also examines circumstances around the opioid overdose, including previous overdoses, treatment, or the presence of bystanders.


Help spread the word on social media:

  • For International Overdose Awareness Day 2018 we are putting data into action to #EndOverdose.
  • The drug and opioid overdose epidemic is the public health crisis of our lifetime. The latest data show different factors that play a role in the rise of overdose deaths.
  • New CDC report found 17% of opioid overdose deaths in 11 states tested positive for prescription #opioids, 59% for illicit opioids, and 19% for both.
  • New report looking at overdoses in 11 states found that bystanders were present in more than 40% of opioid overdose deaths, but rarely administered naloxone.



Thank you,

ESOOS Help Desk


Enhanced State Opioid Overdose Surveillance (ESOOS)


Division of Unintentional Injury Prevention (DUIP)

National Center for Injury Prevention and Control (NCIPC)

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

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