Women’s prescription overdose deaths skyrocket

Every day, 42 women die from a drug overdose – and nearly half of those overdoses are from prescription painkillers.

In fact, according to newly released figures from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the number of women dying from prescription drug overdoses has increased by more than 400% since 1999 – nearly double the 265% increase of deaths in men.

“In 2010, more than 6,600 women died from prescription painkillers, four times as many died from cocaine and heroin combined,” says CDC Director Dr. Tom Frieden.

These numbers are proportional to the increasingly high use of prescription painkillers in the last decade, Frieden says, but “the overwhelming number of these deaths … more than 70% were unintentional.”

In fact, a woman was admitted to the emergency room for prescription drug overdose or misuse every three minutes, the CDC found. While women between the ages of 25-54 were the ones most likely to go to the ER, it was women between the ages of 45 and 54 who had the highest risk of dying from a prescription painkiller overdose.

Full story of women prescription over dose at CNN Health

Beedie Savage – President of Quantum Units Education

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Will Savage

Quantum Units Continuing Education provides online CEU training's to licensed professional mental health therapists, counselors, social workers and nurses. Our blog provides updates in the field of news and research related to mental health and substance abuse treatment.