Michigan Opioid Overdoses Were Up In 2020

Dec 28, 2020

FILE - This July 3, 2018 file photo shows a Narcan nasal device which delivers naloxone.
Credit MARY ALTAFFER/AP PHOTO

Fatal and non-fatal opioid overdoses trended up in Michigan this year.

The University of Michigan tracks that information. It gathers data about naloxone given by emergency medical personnel across the state.

And it tracks suspected fatal overdoses recorded by medical examiners.

Jason Goldstick is a statistician and associate professor of emergency medicine at U of M.

He says between March and September of this year, fatal overdoses were up 15-percent over 20-19. Non-fatal overdoses were up more than 28-percent.

“This is some evidence that you know, for whatever reason, overdose rates are higher this year versus last year,” Goldstick said. 

Goldstick says there’s some evidence to suggest that the COVID-19 pandemic played a role in that trend.

But he warns the data are incomplete, and there are likely multiple factors involved in driving overdoses.