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Opiate Addiction

Reducing Opiate-Related Addictions and Deaths

In support of the Franklin County Opiate Action Plan, Central Ohio hospitals are collaborating on several initiatives to reduce the number of residents who are addicted to and die from opiate use disorder. Franklin County faces significant challenges as it works to address the impact of addiction on the lives of its citizens, especially addiction to opiates. Opiate addiction has resulted in a dramatic increase in overdose deaths.

Challenges

  • In 2020, 804 individuals died from overdose in Franklin County, up from 547 in 2019. 
  • Eighty-seven percent of overdose deaths were attributed to fentanyl in 2020, compared to eighty-two percent in 2019.

Initiatives

  • Overdose Education and Prevention: Participating in community-wide events to educate residents on opiate prevention and addiction issues, including how to administer Naloxone.
  • Treatment of Overdose Patients: Assessing opiate overdose patients and referring them to treatment in a timely manner.
  • Screening and referring patients for hepatitis C virus (HCV) testing.
  • Providing patients with a Naloxone kit and instructions on how to use the kit to prevent future overdose incidents.
  • Reducing Opiate Prescriptions: Working to reduce the number of opiate prescriptions dispensed to patients who are undergoing outpatient gastrointestinal surgeries.

Progress

  • Hospitals achieved a significant reduction in the amount of opiates prescribed for patients undergoing five outpatient GI surgeries. (Data is for first quarter 2021 compared to CY 2017  (baseline).
    • Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy (Gallbladder removal using laparoscope), 48.3% reduction
    • Laparoscopic Inguinal Hernia (Hernia repair using laparoscope), 49.4% reduction
    • Open Inguinal Hernia (Hernia repair through open surgery),
      45.6% reduction
    • Umbilical Hernia, 39.9% reduction
    • Appendectomy, 48.6% reduction
  • Through May 2021, Franklin County hospitals have distributed 921 more Narcan kits to individuals presenting at the hospital at risk of overdosing.