This Cause of Death Was Up 42% In Idaho in 2021
Whilst in the middle of a pandemic, it's not natural for one to ponder "I wonder what other major causes of death are around me right now?" It's not something fun to think about. However, with massive numbers increasing beyond expectation, one issue causing loss of life in Idaho is worth taking a deeper look into.
According to the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare's Drug Overdose Prevention Program, deaths in Idaho due to an overdose of fentanyl are increasing rapidly. Too rapidly, to be precise.
Health Program Manager Caroline Messerschmidt explains that in 2020, approximately 21% of overdose deaths stemmed from fentanyl. In 2021, that number leapt to 42%:
We're seeing an increase across the state as far as who is being impacted by fentanyl. Health District's 1 (Panhandle), 4 (Central) and 5 (South Central) have an overdose death rate above the state's overdose death rate of 16 per 100,000 individuals.
Luke Malek, a former prosecutor, expands:
We're looking for issues that are specific for the regions in Idaho, we're also looking for common threads. The more we can focus on those commonalities, the more effectively we can fight this surge.
Why is fentanyl on the rise when it comes to loss of life in Idaho? According to Idaho State Police, fentanyl is 50 times stronger than heroin, and 100 times stronger than morphine. At those levels, it's most certainly not something to be trifled with.
If you or someone you know is struggling with substance abuse, you can call the SAMHSA hotline at 1-800-662-4357 for c.onfidential free help, from public health agencies, to find substance use treatment and information.
Gas Is Under $3 at These Six Treasure Valley Businesses
Boise's Most Promiscuous Places