What is the Opioid Crisis?

Drug overdose is the leading cause of death for Americans under the age of 50, and more than 3 out of 5 drug overdoses involve an opioid. Someone in the U.S. dies of a drug overdose every 20 minutes – and the clock is still ticking. Prescription painkiller and heroin abuse, further compounded by a recent influx of illegal fentanyl, has created a public health crisis throughout our community.


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WHAT IS AN OPIOID?

An opioid is any pain relieving medication or drug (Vicodin, Norco, fentanyl, etc.) that resembles morphine in its physiological or pharmacological effects. Prescription opioids are prescribed to treat moderate to severe pain, but have a high potential for misuse and abuse.

 common opioids


ARE OPIOIDS A PROBLEM IN MENDOCINO COUNTY?

Sadly, yes. The rate of opioid overdose deaths in our county is 3 times more than that of the rate for California as a whole. And, in 2017, 17 individuals lost their life due to a preventable opioid overdose.

 opioid overdose deaths


WHAT YOU CAN DO

Prescription drug abuse and overdose is preventable. There are many easy ways for community members to help fight the opioid epidemic in Mendocino County. Things you can do today to help curb the opioid epidemic:

  • If prescribed an opioid, talk to your doctor about proper dosing and potential side effects.
  • Get Naloxone for yourself or family or friends who use opioids.
  • Join our coalition! Contact us at 707-472-2611 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


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 Adapted from Ventura County Behavioral Health / www.venturacountyresponds.org 

 

Media Toolkit            Mendocino: corradoh@mendocinocounty.org



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