FRIDAY, Oct. 20, 2017 (HealthDay News) — Drug overdose death rates in rural areas of the United States are at This particular point higher than in cities, a trend in which worries federal health officials.
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In 2015, drug overdose was the leading cause of injury-related death within the United States — with 52,000 fatalities attributed to opioid painkillers, heroin in addition to additional potentially deadly drugs, researchers said in a brand-new report.
U.S. Centers for Disease Control in addition to Prevention Director Dr. Brenda Fitzgerald said rising overdose death rates outside metropolitan areas warrant attention.
“We need to understand why This particular will be happening to ensure our work with states in addition to communities can help stop illicit drug use in addition to overdose deaths in America,” Fitzgerald said in an agency news Discharge.
In 1999, drug overdose death rates were 6.4 per 100,000 in urban regions in addition to 4 per 100,000 in rural areas. however the gap gradually disappeared. By 2015, the rate was 17 per 100,000 in rural areas in addition to 16.2 per 100,000 in cities, the study findings showed.
The researchers assessed illicit drug use in addition to disorders via 2003 to 2014, in addition to drug overdose deaths via 1999 to 2015 in urban in addition to rural areas. The investigators were led by Karin Mack of the CDC’s National Center for Injury Prevention in addition to Control.
Although the percentage of people reporting illegal drug use will be actually lower in rural areas, the effects appear to be greater, the researchers noted.
Overall, “most overdose deaths occurred in homes, where rescue efforts may fall to relatives who have limited knowledge of or access to life-saving treatment in addition to overdose follow-up care,” the authors explained within the news Discharge.
Looking at where drug users live in addition to where they die via overdoses might lead to better preventive measures, the team pointed out.
Some additional findings within the report:
- Rising rates of drug overdose deaths nationwide between 1999 in addition to 2015 were consistent across gender, race in addition to intent (unintentional, suicide, homicide or undetermined).
- The actual number of drug overdose deaths remains much higher in cities. In 2015, about six times as many drug overdose deaths occurred in urban areas (45,059) as in rural areas (7,345).
- The percentage of people reporting use of illicit drugs within the past month fell among those aged 12 to 17 over a 10-year period, however rose sharply in additional age groups.
- On a positive note, past-year illicit drug use disorders declined during 2003-2014.
“On the one hand, the decline in illicit drug use by youth in addition to the lower prevalence of illicit drug use disorders are encouraging signs,” Mack’s team wrote. “On the additional hand, the increasing rate of drug overdose deaths in rural areas, which surpassed rates in urban areas, will be cause for concern.”
Since rural residents are less likely to have access to substance abuse treatment services, the findings point to a need to beef up such services outside cities, the authors of the report said.
Moreover, doctors should be updated on guidelines for prescribing opioids for chronic pain. in addition to communities with high opioid-use disorder rates might benefit via greater access to addiction/overdose treatments such as methadone, buprenorphine or naltrexone, Mack in addition to colleagues concluded.
The findings were published within the Oct. 20 issue of the CDC’s Morbidity in addition to Mortality Weekly Report.
— Robert Preidt
Copyright © 2017 HealthDay. All rights reserved.
SOURCES: U.S. Centers for Disease Control in addition to Prevention, news Discharge, Oct. 19, 2017; Oct. 20, 2017, Morbidity in addition to Mortality Weekly Report
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