Georgia opioid deaths fall 12% from 2017 to 2018

August 26, 2019 - 1:31 pm

ATLANTA (AP) — Prescriptions for opioids, as well as possible indicators of abuse, continue to fall in Georgia.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports new figures released by the state Public Health Department show prescriptions for opioids fell 13% from 2016 to 2018.

Preliminary numbers show opioid-related overdose deaths of Georgia residents dropped by 12% between 2017 and 2018, falling from 996 to 873. Opioid deaths dropped 2% nationwide.

Experts say publicity about the dangers of opioids, three-year-old federal guidelines for dosage levels and the expansion of treatment and prevention programs may all be driving the decreases.

Laura Edison, an epidemiologist at the state's Public Health Department says reducing prescription helps cut addiction and illicit resales. She notes Georgia's requirement that physicians and dentists check a state prescription database before prescribing new drugs.

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Information from: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, http://www.ajc.com

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