First look at statewide opioid data in real time
PHOENIX – New data collected in the Arizona opioid epidemic emergency response show opioid related events over the course of seven days. Last week, health care professionals, medical examiners, and emergency responders reported 191 suspected opioid overdoses in Arizona with 15 of those turning fatal.
“This new, real-time data gives us a clear picture we didn’t have before,” said Governor Doug Ducey. “One life lost to these highly addictive drugs is too many. One more person becoming hooked is no longer an option. Our public health response will begin working on targeted solutions to curb this opioid epidemic.”
Governor Ducey issued an executive order June 13 calling for immediate action in the state’s opioid emergency response. The executive order requires opioid overdose and death data to be reported to the Arizona Department of Health Services within 24 hours of the event, effective June 15.
“In addition to the data collection, we are currently working to train over 700 law enforcement and emergency medical services, or EMS providers, on naloxone administration,” said Dr. Cara Christ, director of the Arizona Department of Health Services. “Our training will expand to public health, clinicians, and pharmacists, to share knowledge on overdose recognition and treatment, naloxone administration, opioid-related reporting, appropriate prescribing practices, and medication assisted treatment.”
Under the Governor’s executive order, five main categories of data will be collected including opioid-related overdoses and deaths, naloxone doses both administered and dispensed, and cases of neonatal abstinence syndrome. During the first week of reporting, 18 incidents of neonatal abstinence syndrome were reported for newborns suspected of undergoing opioid withdrawal symptoms. Additional data collected shows emergency responders administered 102 doses of naloxone, the overdose reversal drug. Arizona pharmacists dispensed 51 naloxone kits to those at high risk of overdose.
The Arizona Department of Health Services will update opioid-related reporting to its websitehttp://azhealth.gov/opioid every Monday. Information on training, reporting requirements, opioid information, and frequently asked questions may be found throughout the website.
# # #
The award-winning, nationally recognized Arizona Department of Health Services is responsible for leading Arizona’s public health system including responding to disease outbreaks, licensing health and childcare facilities, operating the Arizona State Hospital, and improving the overall health and wellness of all Arizonans.