ICUs See Sharp Increase in Opioid Overdose-Related Admissions

doctor and patient in hospital ICU

Intensive care units have seen a rapid increase in the number of admissions related to opioid overdoses, according to a new study. Admissions jumped 34 percent over seven years.

Between 2009 and 2015, opioid deaths in the ICU almost doubled. “This study tells us that the opioid epidemic has made people sicker and killed more people, in spite of all the care we can provide in the ICU, including mechanical ventilation, acute dialysis, life support and round-the-clock care,” study lead author Dr. Jennifer Stevens of the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston said in a news release.

The study found the average cost of care per ICU overdose admission rose 58 percent between 2009 and 2015, to more than $92,000, HealthDay reports.

The study appears in the Annals of the American Thoracic Society.

Heroin, Fentanyl & Other Opioids: From Understanding to Action

Heroin and other opioids are ravaging communities across America. Deaths from heroin increased 328% between 2010 and 2015, and drug deaths from fentanyl and other synthetic opioids are now seeing a sharp rise as well. More Americans die from drug overdoses than in car crashes, and this increasing trend is driven by Rx painkillers.

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