Opioids

Courtesy of the publisher

More than 70,000 people died from drug overdoeses in 2017, making ovrdoses a greater killer than gun violence or car crashes in the U.S.. Of the more than 70,000 lives lost to drugs in 2017, over 68 percent were opioid-related, solidfying opioids, including synthetic drugs such as fentanyl, as a growing killer in the United States. 

Courtesy of The National Institute on Drug Abuse

Last year, opioid-related deaths in Iowa decreased by 33 percent, marking a five year low for the state, according to statistics released this month from the state's Department of Health Statistics.

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Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller has announced he is joining four other states in suing pharmaceutical company Purdue Pharma and its former chairman, Richard Sackler, for using unlawful practices to sell the opioid painkiller OxyContin.

Todd Huffman / Creative Commons

 

Opioid-related deaths are on the rise in Iowa, and research suggests that needle exchanges may be effective in decreasing drug-related deaths.

 

naloxone
Tom Wolf / flickr

Iowa officials will distribute 2,000 free opioid overdose reversal kits throughout the state this Friday.

More than 350 pharmacies will have naloxone, a drug that stops an opioid overdose, available for free. Each kit has two doses of the drug in a nasal spray form, branded as Narcan.

It’s part of the state’s effort to address increasing opioid-related deaths in the state.

Courtesy of The National Institute on Drug Abuse

A new addiction treatment clinic is now open in Burlington. The facility will offer medication-assisted treatment, or MAT, a somewhat controversial approach that pairs behavioral therapy with medication. Staff members behind the new center hope to counteract the stigma some drug users are facing.