Report: Drug Overdose Deaths Have Quadrupled Since 1999

Indiana has the 17th highest drug overdose mortality rate in the country, a report from Trust for America’s Health indicates.

prescription drugs

Photo: breadleypjohnson (flickr)

More people are dying from prescription drug overdoses in Indiana.

Drug overdose deaths in Indiana have quadrupled over the last decade, with a majority of those a result of prescription drug abuse.

Indiana has the 17th highest drug overdose mortality rate in the country, and since 1999, only three other states have seen their overdose mortality rate increase as much as Indiana.

Trust for America’s Health Deputy Director Rich Hamburg says one factor that contributes to Indiana’s problem is pain reliever sales that are considerably higher in the state than many of its neighbors. Hamburg says addressing the problem begins with education.

“That particularly those in high risk groups – teenagers, young adults, their parents – need to be aware that certain pain medications can become addictive and to learn the consequences of misuse in using them and the alternative ways to control pain.”

Hamburg says Indiana is doing some good things to combat prescription drug abuse, such as its use of a prescription monitoring system that helps prevents people from ‘doctor shopping’ – getting the same prescription from several doctors.

But he says the state needs to go further, which includes making use of that system mandatory.

Brandon Smith, IPBS

Brandon Smith, IPBS has previously worked as a reporter and anchor for KBIA Radio in Columbia, MO, and at WSPY Radio in Plano, IL as a show host, reporter, producer and anchor. Brandon graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2010, with minors in political science and history. He was born and raised in Chicago.

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  • Classic

    Cannabis (Marijuana) offers safe and effective pain relief without risk of overdose. There are now, many hundreds of websites and scientific studies describing the plant in detail, so I won’t go into that here. My advise is to Google ‘cannabis and health’ or ‘cannabis and pain management’ or ‘cannabis and cancer’ to begin your awakening. The drug industry, prison industry, agricultural industry have millions to lose if Cannabis is legal and our politicians will try their best to protect these special interests and put their profits over citizen’s health. It’s quite a shame.

  • Pingback: VIDEO: Local drug abuse forum to be held tonight – Poughkeepsie Journal | Definition of Addiction

  • Pingback: Benzie County gets new drug to treat overdoses – UpNorthLive.com | Asana Health and Wellness

  • Andrea Bradford Smith

    I take prescription pain meds and have been on them for 3yrs and the pain is still there and I can’t go a day without my meds, I would rather try cannabis I know people that use it for pain and they have said it helps a lot better then the stupid pills

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