Opioid Epidemic by State
Millions of Americans suffer from pain and are often prescribed opioids to treat their conditions. However, the dangers of prescription misuse, opioid use disorder, and overdose have been a growing problem throughout the United States.
Since the 1990s, when the number of opioids prescribed to patients began to grow, the number of overdoses and deaths from prescription opioids has also increased. Even as the amount of opioids prescribed and sold for pain has increased, the amount of pain that Americans report has not similarly changed
From 1999 to 2017, almost 218,000 people died in the United States from overdoses related to prescription opioids. Overdose deaths involving prescription opioids were five times higher in 2017 than in 1999.
Escalating use of prescription opioids for pain management has drastically contributed to America’s opioid epidemic.
Scroll down to see how the epidemic is affecting your state.
Alaska’s governor declared opioid abuse a public health emergency in 2017.
Source: Office of the Governor
Alabama has the highest rate of opioid prescribing in the country.
66 of 75 Arkansas counties had opioid prescribing rates higher than the national average in 2016.
In 2016, 790 people died from opioid overdoses in Arizona, a 74% increase over 4 years.
1,925 Californians had opioid-linked overdose deaths in 2016.
Opioid overdoses result in 300 deaths per year in Colorado.
In Connecticut, accidental overdose deaths increased 25% from 2015 to 2016.
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA
Opioid overdose deaths in Washington, DC, more than doubled from 2014 to 2016.
Delaware had the country’s highest high-dosage prescription rate in 2014-2016.
Florida is among 6 states that declared opioid abuse a public health emergency in 2017.
Of 1,462 overdose deaths in Georgia in 2016, 67% were due to opioid overdoses.
In 2015, there were 169 deaths in Hawaii from a drug overdose.
Admissions for opioid treatment in Iowa increased 274% from 2005-2016.
Source: Iowa Department of Public Health
There were 218 drug overdose deaths in Idaho in 2015.
Of 2,000+ overdose deaths in Illinois in 2016, more than 80% were opioid-related.
In 2015, opioid pain relievers were responsible for 274 deaths in Indiana.
Drug poisoning deaths involving heroin increased 71% from 2013-2015 in Kansas.
Of 1,330 overdose deaths in Kentucky in 2016, 31% were among people ages 35-44.
Louisiana is the fifth highest prescriber of painkillers, with 98.1 prescriptions per 100 people.
Opioid-related deaths in Massachusetts were more than 4 times higher in 2015 than in 2000.
In 2015, 86% of overdose deaths in Maryland involved opioids.
Maine is the fourth highest prescribing state for long-acting and extended-release opioids.
In 2016, 11 million opioid prescriptions were written in Michigan, about 1.1 per resident.
In 2016, there were 186 prescription opioid-related deaths in Minnesota.
Source: Minnesota Department of Health
One out of every 66 deaths in Missouri were due to opioid overdose in 2016.
Mississippi is the fourth highest prescriber of opioids.
There were 693 deaths in Montana from 2000-2015 attributed to prescription opioid poisoning.
At least 54 Nebraskans died of opioid overdoses in 2015.
Drug deaths increased by 148% in New Hampshire from 2010 to 2015.
Drug overdose deaths increased by 21% in New Jersey from 2014 to 2015.
Source: New Jersey Medical Examiner’s Office
There were 493 drug overdose deaths in New Mexico in 2015.
Source: New Mexico Department of Health
There were 465 opioid deaths in Nevada in 2015.
Opioid-related emergency department visits increased 73% in New York from 2010-2014.
From 1999 to 2016, more than 12,000 North Carolinians died from opioid-related overdoses, the majority of which were unintentional overdoses.
In North Dakota, opioid-induced fatalities increased by 125% from 2013-2014.
Of all unintentional overdose deaths in Ohio in 2016, 20% had an opioid prescription in the previous 30 days.
Source: Ohio Department of Health
Oklahoma is the third highest prescriber of long-acting and extended-release opioids.
An average of 3 Oregonians dies each week from a prescription opioid overdose.
Source: Oregon Health Authority
An average of 13 people died from drug overdose each day in Pennsylvania in 2016.
Rhode Island had the fifth highest rate of drug overdose deaths in 2015.
In 2015, there were 594 opioid-related overdose deaths in South Carolina.
South Dakota, population 865,454, had 664,191 opioid prescriptions in 2016.
Source: USA Today
In 2016, Tennessee was the third highest prescriber of opioids.
There were 1,287 opioid-related deaths in Texas in 2015.
Source: Kaiser Family Foundation
There were 448 opioid-related deaths in Utah in 2015.
Source: Kaiser Family Foundation
An average of 2 Virginians dies every day from a prescription opioid or heroin overdose.
Source: Virginia Department of Health
In 2016, there were 101 opioid-related overdose deaths in Vermont—a rate of 18.4 deaths per 100,000 persons and more than the national rate of 13.3 deaths per 100,000 persons.
Source: Vermont Department of Health
More Washingtonians died from opioid overdose than from car accidents in 2015.
More Wisconsinites died from opioid overdoses than from car accidents in 2015.
West Virginia had the country’s highest drug overdose death rate in 2015.
There were 96 opioid-related deaths in Wyoming in 2015.