How much is the opioid crisis hurting our nation?

Opioid addition is killing more Americans today than ever before. An average of 130 Americans die of opioid overdoses every day.0 The heroin overdose death rate increased 80% from 2008 to 2017, while the synthetic opioid death rate jumped 45 % between 2016 and 2017 alone.1 More people died from opioid overdoses in 2016 than breast cancer or car accidents.2

Who is most at risk?

Opioid addiction disproportionately affects our nation’s young people, particularly those between 19 and 35 years old.6 In 2017, more people between the ages of 25 and 34 died of opioid overdoses than any other age group.4 Heroin overdose deaths are most prevalent in large metropolitan populations.3

I use non-prescribed opioids, but I don’t feel addicted. Why should I stop?

Habitual opioid use can cause serious side effects that could negatively impact your quality of life. Chronic opioid abuse can cause increased risk of HIV, clogged blood vessels, hallucinations, nausea, vomiting, and could even put you in a coma.5

I need help with my opioid addiction. What should I do?

No matter where you live, help is only a phone call away. The U.S. Department of Health & Human Service has a 24/7 hotline (1-800-662-4357) for those battling substance abuse, and an online treatment center locator you can use to find specialists across the country.

I can’t afford treatment for my opioid addiction. What should I do?

Medicaid can help low-income individuals get the treatment they need. Medicaid covers both inpatient and outpatient treatment services in addition to Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT).7

What is the government doing to combat the opioid crisis?

The Trump administration worked with Congress to pass the IMD CARE Act, which allows states to apply for federal Medicaid payments to cover the costs of treating opioid use disorders.8This is one of many recent government efforts to help eliminate the opioid epidemic. To learn more about what the White House is doing to combat this crisis, click here.

How does the U.S. opioid crisis compare to other countries?

Among the world’s 20 most populous countries, the United States is far-and-away the heaviest user of opioids. More doses of opioids are used in the U.S. daily than the other 19 most populous countries combined.9

I want to help fight the opioid epidemic. How can I do that?

There are several non-profit groups working to combat the opioid crisis, including Advocates for Opioid Recovery and Shatterproof. Some local treatment centers accept volunteers, so be sure to check with treatment centers in your area to see how you can help.