WENY News - ER visits for opioid overdose up 30%, CDC study finds

ER visits for opioid overdose up 30%, CDC study finds

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(CNN) -- The opioid epidemic in the United States shows no signs of slowing, according to a Vital Signs Report released Tuesday by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The report found that emergency department visits due to suspected opioid overdoses continued to climb -- about 30% -- from July 2016 to September 2017 across the country.

"This is really a fast-moving epidemic that's getting worse," said Dr. Anne Schuchat, acting director of the CDC and acting administrator of the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, who was not an author of the report.

"The increases in overdoses were seen in adults of all age groups. They were seen in men and women. They were seen in every geographic region in the nation," she said.

The findings in the report could help identify and track overdoses in a way that helps the development of responses from both the medical community and law enforcement agencies, Schuchat said.

Based on the report, some emergency departments could enhance prevention and treatment and improve efforts to connect patients with resources to help prevent future overdoses.

"We really think that this is a wake-up call for all of us -- that the opioid epidemic is in all of our communities and that there's more that we need to do," Schuchat said.

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