19 May The Impact of the Opioid Crisis in New Mexico
Drug overdose is now the leading cause of accidental death in the United States. Opioid addiction is considered the driving force behind these needless deaths. Opioids are a family of drugs that include both legal prescription drugs such as fentanyl and morphine and the illicit drug heroin.
In 2016, the National Institute of Health published a study that found that 70% of New Mexican adults were prescribed an opioid class drug and ranked the state at #14 of 50 for Opioid-related deaths. Since 2012, the number of overdoses in New Mexico due to Heroin has nearly doubled. Deaths from synthetic opioids have nearly tripled.
Secondary conditions from opioid abuse include HIV and Hepatitis C. In 2015, there were 135 new cases of HIV in New Mexico, adding to the already 3,096 people diagnosed with HIV in the state. In 2015 there were 3, 680 cases of chronic or acute Hepatitis C with a suspected 45,000 other New Mexicans with Hepatitis C.
On April 11, 2018, the Associated Press reported that the Navajo Nation has brought a suit against the pharmaceutical companies and drug distributors for disproportionately affecting American Indians. The undisclosed amount the tribe is seeking, if awarded, will cover substance use treatment and to help law enforcement and social service programs rise to meet the growing epidemic.
There is no cure for substance use disorders or opioid addiction, but there is help. The next step is treatment. Below is a tip sheet from the United States’ Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Our dedicated staff at ViewPoint Rehabilitation Center are ready to take your call.
Learn more: The National Institute on Drug Abuse