Battle the Opioid Overdose Epidemic with Information and Action

The United States is in the midst of a prescription opioid overdose epidemic. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 44 people in the United States die every day from prescription opioid overdose and many more become addicted. Although much attention is given to prescription opioid overdose, heroin-related deaths have also increased sharply since 2010, with a 39% increase between 2012 and 2013.

Opioids are natural or synthetic chemicals that bind to receptors in your brain or body. Common opioids include heroin and prescription painkillers such as oxycodone, hydrocodone and fentanyl.

Opioid abuse is a serious public health issue, but preventive actions, treatment for addiction and proper response to overdoses can help.

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is working hard to battle the opioid overdose epidemic with action and information. At www.hhs.gov/opioids, in addition to drug facts and prevention, you can find information on the following:

Working under contract with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), atom Alliance is working regionally in five states—Alabama, Indiana, Kentucky, Mississippi and Tennessee—to prevent medication harm. Learn more here.

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