Prescription Drug Abuse is a National Epidemic: How Are Indiana and Illinois Faring in Dealing with Prescription Drug Problem Per New 2013 Report?


Prescription Drug Abuse is a National Epidemic: How Are Indiana and Illinois Faring in Dealing with Prescription Drug Problem Per New 2013 Report?

Prescription drugs, by definition, are those drugs that are only available by a doctor’s prescription. These aren’t street drugs (like heroin or cocaine); these are pills manufactured by drug companies for the purpose of helping patients feel better or heal.

We’ve been monitoring this escalating and huge problem in our country today, where a doctor’s prescribed drugs are seriously hurting and killing people as prescription drug abuse runs rampant.

How bad is the problem here? In a newly released report entitled “Prescription Drug Abuse: Strategies to Stop the Epidemic,” published by Trust for America’s Health, each state has been researched for how serious the problem is within their jurisdiction and how better or worse things are now, as compared to several years ago.

The 2013 Prescription Drug Abuse report reveals that nationally, the number of people dying from prescription drug overdoses is shocking:

Sales of prescription drugs are staggeringly high. According to the Center for Injury Prevention and Control (CIPC), nationally, in 2010, there were so many prescription painkillers given out by doctors that there were enough pain pills out there to medicate every American adult continually for a month.

“Fifty Americans die a day from prescription drug overdoses, and more than 6 million suffer from prescription drug abuse disorders. This is a very real epidemic – and warrants a strong public health response,” said Andrea Gielen, ScD, Director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Injury Research and Policy. “We must use the best lessons we know from other public health and injury prevention success stories to work in partnership with clinical care, law enforcement, the business community, community-based organizations, and other partners to work together to curb this crisis.”

From the Report:

STATE-BY-STATE DRUG OVERDOSE MORTALITY RANKINGS

Note: Rates include total drug overdose mortality rates, the majority of which are from prescription drugs. 1 = Highest rate of drug overdose fatalities, 51 = lowest rate of drug overdose fatalities.  Rankings are based on data from CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics, WONDER Online Database, 2010. The numbers are based on the number of people per 100,000.

1. West Virginia**** (28.9);
2. New Mexico (23.8);
3. Kentucky**** (23.6);
4. Nevada (20.7);
5. Oklahoma*** (19.4);
6. Arizona (17.5);
7. Missouri*** (17);
8. (tie) Tennessee** and Utah (16.9);
10. Delaware** (16.6);
11. Florida** (16.4);
12. Ohio*** (16.1);
13. Rhode Island** (15.5);
14. Pennsylvania (15.3);
15. Wyoming*** (15);
16. South Carolina*** (14.6);
17. Indiana**** (14.4);
18. Michigan*** (13.9);
19. Louisiana*** (13.2);
20. Washington (13.1);
21. (tie) District of Columbia and Montana** and Oregon** (12.9);
24. Colorado (12.7);
25. Arkansas** (12.5);
26. (tie) Alabama*** and Idaho** and New Hampshire** (11.8);
29. Alaska (11.6); 30. (tie) Mississippi***and North Carolina** (11.4);
32. (tie) Maryland and Massachusetts (11);
34. (tie) Hawaii and Wisconsin** (10.9);
36. Georgia*** (10.7);
37. California (10.6);
38. Maine (10.4);
39. Connecticut (10.1);
40. Illinois (10);
41. New Jersey (9.8);
42. Vermont** (9.7);
43. (tie) Kansas** and Texas (9.6);
45. Iowa**** (8.6);
46. New York (7.8);
47. Minnesota** (7.3);
48. Virginia (6.8);
49. Nebraska** (6.7);
50. South Dakota (6.3);
51. North Dakota (3.4).

** Drug Overdose Mortality Rates doubled from 1999 to 2010
*** Drug Overdose Mortality Rates tripled from 1999 to 2010
**** Drug Overdose Mortality Rates quadrupled from 1999 to 2010

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