How Many People in Washington Die by Dangerous Drug Overdose?
Drug overdose, such as fentanyl in Washington is a serious public health crisis.
Nationally, over 300,000 people have died from prescription and illicit opioids in the last 15 years. (That's about 55 people per day) The Washington State Department of Health has launched the Opioid and Drug Overdose Data dashboard that includes county data on hospitalizations and deaths due to overdose of opioids. This new tool presents updated information in an easy to understand format, which will be more accessible to the public.
“Drug overdose, particularly from opioids such as fentanyl, is a serious public health crisis in our country and in our state. Between 2007 and 2021, more than 17,500 Washington residents died from a drug overdose. Sixty-eight percent of those deaths involved an opioid, with the annual number nearly doubling since 2019,” said Tao Sheng Kwan-Gett, MD, MPH. “It is our hope that community members and organizations across the state will use this data to understand who in their communities are most affected by opioids, and to advocate for treatment and services.”
How often is data updated in the dashboard?
Preliminary information on the dashboard has been updated to 2022. Cocaine is an addition on the list of drugs reported. Information is updated quarterly to include death certificates as well as hospital discharge information. The data can be used to examine opioid morbidity and mortality due to drug overdose in the state.