Opioid use disorder related to prescription pain relievers
affected an estimated 10.1 million people in 2019. The impacts of the opioid epidemic have only magnified during the
COVID-19 pandemic. In 2020, an
average of 44 people died each day in the U.S. from overdoses involving
prescription opioids, totaling more than 16,000 deaths, a 16% increase from the
previous year. Preliminary data
from the Minnesota Department of Health shows that from 2020 to 2021,
opioid-involved overdose deaths increased by 35%, to an all-time high of 924
deaths in 2021.
Deaths from prescription opioids have quadrupled
since 1999. This trend can only be reversed with collaboration from health care
systems and their patients. Hospitals and health systems are partnering with
patients, families and communities to prevent misuse by improving opioid
prescribing practices, to reduce exposure to opioids by using alternative
therapies and to treat opioid use disorder with evidence-based therapy.
The resources below will help hospitals, health systems, health care providers and patients meet the goal of safe pain management.