Davis Motor Sales banner ad

painkiller overdose 300FRANKFORT, Ky. (7/27/13) – For the first time in a decade, Kentucky overdose deaths declined in 2012, according to a report issued today by the Office of Drug Control Policy. Even with the overall drop, autopsied overdose deaths attributed to the use of heroin increased 550 percent over the previous year, to 143 cases, up from 22 in 2011.
 
Of the 1,004 overdose fatalities in 2012, 888 were found to be unintentional, 59 were suicides and 57 remain undetermined, according to the report. In 2011, there were 1023 overdose deaths in Kentucky.
 
The data, contained in the 2012 Overdose Fatality Report, was compiled from the Kentucky Medical Examiner’s Office, the Kentucky Injury Prevention & Research Council, and the Kentucky Office of Vital Statistics. The report was mandated under a provision in HB 1 from the 2012 Special Session.
 
“Obviously, we’re pleased to see that we’ve broken the trend of steadily increasing drug overdose numbers,” said Van Ingram, executive director of the Office of Drug Control Policy.
 
The report also reveals that overdose deaths attributed to the use of heroin accounted for nearly one-fifth -- 19.56 percent -- of all Kentucky Medical Examiner drug overdose cases in 2012. In 2011, that percentage was 3.22 percent.

Ingram added that while the increase in heroin deaths is troubling, it was not completely unexpected. Kentucky first started seeing an increase in heroin use and deaths when the formulation for Oxycontin was changed in 2010 and for Opana in 2011 to make those drugs more difficult for intravenous drug use.
 
“As House Bill 1 has taken effect, opiates available through illicit means – doctor shopping and street sales – have become less available, requiring drug users to seek out cheaper and more available alternatives,” Ingram said. “Unfortunately, that’s heroin.”
 
Other significant findings include:
• Jefferson County had the most overdose deaths of any county, with 167.
• The largest increase in overdose fatalities occurred in Campbell County, with 54 in 2012 compared to 25 deaths in 2011.
• The largest decrease occurred in Floyd County, with 23 fewer fatalities in 2012 than 2011 (14 versus 37, respectively). Other counties with significant declines in 2012 include Clay (17 fewer), Knox (12 fewer), and Johnson (11 fewer).
• Overdose deaths in many Eastern Kentucky counties, when compared by 100,000 population, combined 2011 and 2012 data, showed high rates. The top 10 counties by overdose deaths per 100,000 people for 2011 and 2012 combined are:
 
Leslie County 85 per 100,000
Clinton County 78 per 100,000
Clay County 76 per 100,000
Estill County 65 per 100,000
Floyd County 65 per 100,000
Nicholas County 64 per 100,000
Perry County 63 per 100,000
Whitley County 56 per 100,000
Monroe County 53 per 100,000
Magoffin County 53 per 100,000
 
Of the overdose deaths autopsied by the Kentucky Medical Examiner’s Office in 2012:
• Alprazolam remained the most detected controlled substance in overdose deaths, present in 41.44 percent of all autopsied cases.
• Morphine was next at 32.01 percent, followed by hydrocodone 25.99 percent, Oxycodone 24.21 percent, Heroin at 19.56 percent, and Oxymorphone at 17.51 percent. The report notes many of the cases with morphine detected may in fact involve heroin, as morphine is the major pharmaceutical substance detected in the blood after injection of heroin.
• The youngest overdose fatality was 16 years old and the oldest was 72 years old. The average age of an overdose victim was 40, and the majority – 58 percent – were male.

To view the report in its entirety, visit: http://odcp.ky.gov/NR/rdonlyres/C6EE39C4-E6EE-4E4B-913F-C45BD1E177AD/0/2012ODCPOverdoseDeathReportEDITS3.pdf.
 
SurfKY News
Information provided by Jennifer Brislin (Kentucky Justice and Public Safety Cabinet)

© Copyright 2015 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story on social media.

Posted on 2/2/14
3/13 - 16
1 DOW 18,132.70
-81.72 (-0.45%)    
2 S&P 2,104.50
-6.24 (-0.30%)    
3 NASDAQ 4,963.53
-24.36 (-0.49%)    
3/13 - 16

Most Read This Week

February 21, 2015 7936

Traffic Advisory for Western Kentucky

in Top News For All Sites by KTC
February 25, 2015 7092

Multi-Agency Investigation Nets Large-Scale Meth…

in Top News For All Sites by Trooper Stu Recke
February 24, 2015 6946

Two Charged in Central City Meth Bust

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Trooper Stu Recke
February 22, 2015 6809

Easter Cuties Pageant in Memory of Shanice Bean

in Top News For All Sites Touching Hopkins by Tammy Holloway, SurfKY News
February 21, 2015 6506

Local Administrators Warn Employees to Watch for…

in Top News For All Sites by Tammy Holloway, SurfKY News
February 25, 2015 6056

New Asian Restaurant Coming to Madisonville

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Gary Gates, SurfKY News

Most Read This Month

February 12, 2015

UPDATE: Name of Pennyrile Fatality Officially…

in Top News For All Sites Touching Hopkins by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News
February 09, 2015

Police Pursue Man after Fight at Taco Bell

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department/Hopkins County Detention Center

Stories Trending Today

February 28, 2015 3317

City's Parking Ordinances to be Strictly Enforced…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News
February 27, 2015 2590

AIRPLAY: Travis Dukes Makes Stop for Jam Session

in Top News For All Sites by Paul McRee, SurfKY News
February 27, 2015 2341

Local Church Hosting Spring Campmeeting

in Video by Gary Gates, SurfKY News
February 28, 2015 1934

Market Commentary - Feb. 28, 2015

in Top News For All Sites by Randall L. Franklin
February 28, 2015 1644

Keeping the Faith - 'The Fewer the Words the…

in General News For All Sites by Ronnie McBrayer
February 28, 2015 1628

UK Athletics to Deepen Investment in Center for…

in General Sports For All Sites by UK Athletics
February 28, 2015 1614

Hooked on Science - 'Scribblebot'

in General News For All Sites by Jason Lindsey
February 28, 2015 1567

Whitfield Meets with American Physical Therapy…

in General News For All Sites by Robert Hankins
February 28, 2015 1528

Happenings, Meetings Listed for Hopkins County

in Hopkins News by Amber Averitt, SurfKY News
March 01, 2015 1330

HCCHS Student Has Unique Eye for Art

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Amber Averitt, SurfKY News