Why Doesn’t Our Local Hospital See More Overdose Deaths?

Dr. Gail Gabbert

You may be aware of the opioid epidemic in the US right now. Opioids include heroin and prescription pain medication. There are now nearly 100 deaths a day from opioid overdoses. Deaths from opioids have been rising sharply for years, and drug overdoses are projected to increase. The toll could spike to 250 deaths a day, if potent synthetic opioids like fentanyl and carfentanil continue to spread rapidly. It is estimated that the death toll over the next decade could top 650,000.

I wear several different professional hats. One of my hats is that of a substance abuse counselor at Galena Clinic, a drug treatment facility that provides medication to opioid dependent people. We provide Methadone and Suboxone to people who can benefit from its properties. These medications reduce opioid withdrawal symptoms, decrease cravings for opiates, and blocks euphoria if the patient returns to opioid use while taking these medications.

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