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“The crisis is that we don’t understand the crisis, and because of that, countless lives have been lost,” said Rocco Perla, co-founder of The Health Initiative.

Every day, opioid overdoses take the lives of our neighbors, classmates and friends. And, according to an analysis Perla conducted at the request of U.S. News & World Report, the number of opioid deaths is continuing to peak and there is no end in sight.

Here are five surprising facts provide a closer look at the impact of opioid addiction.

  1. Each day, 140 individuals in the United States die of a drug overdose, 91 specifically due to opioids.
  2. Between 2011 and 2015, overdose deaths in the US from opioids tripled.
  3. By 2014, Americans were more likely to die from an opioid overdose than from a car accident.
  4. By 2017, life expectancy in the United States declined due to opioids.
  5. By 2017, half of all men out of the labor force were taking an opioid.

What Can You Do?

These statistics say it all. It is more important now than ever that everyone is trained in Mental Health First Aid. The program has recently added a supplement to its traditional adult course to help people recognize and respond to those who may be addicted to opioids or experiencing an overdose. They also learn how to administer the lifesaving opioid overdose antidote, naloxone.

As a trained First Aider, you could respond in a way that could save a life. If you are already trained, thank you. If you are not, get trained today.

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