A PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT FROM THE SPRINGBOARD CENTER
West Texas Sees Rise In Drug Overdoses, Matching National Surge
As we enter the holiday season, Springboard wants to remind Permian Basin residents to be on guard for those that tend to overdo it or flat-out abuse drugs and alcohol. Social isolation and the inability to access support groups make it harder for those who may be addicted or well on their way to addiction. Many residents may not be aware that vehicle accidents leading to death involving cannabis and alcohol have skyrocketed.
Between 2000-2018, the percentage of car crash deaths involving cannabis has doubled, and the percentage of deaths involving both cannabis and alcohol has more than doubled. People who died in crashes involving cannabis were 50% more likely to also have alcohol in their system. It was once assumed that legalization of cannabis would stem the use of alcohol, but users of one tend to use both in concert leading to a greater degree of impairment.
Drug overdose deaths in the United States surpassed 100,000 in a 12-month period for the first time, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Wednesday, a troubling milestone amid an already devastating period for the country. The number of overdose deaths rose 29 percent, from 78,056 from April 2019 to April 2020, to 100,306 in the following 12 months.
Texas has seen a 36% increase in overdose deaths and follows the trend that these deaths are due to opioids — mostly synthetic opioids, including fentanyl — accounted for more than 75%. Deaths due to psychostimulants, predominantly methamphetamine, also increased. Cocaine accounted for slightly more deaths in 2021 than the year before, and heroin deaths decreased. The CDC said that overdose deaths “are often the result of multiple drugs” and “they are killing people in combination, fentanyl combined with another drug such as methamphetamine or cocaine.”
Many West Texas residents may be aware of the recent death of a teen in Odessa where four people overdosed on Oxycodone. Later inspection of the pills recovered at the scene was found to have been counterfeit with other dangerous narcotics mixed with them.
Dr. Mark Alexander with The Springboard Center said, “the Center has seen 25% increase in patients testing positive for fentanyl and in many cases the patient is not aware that their drug of choice has been cut or laced with fentanyl”.
During this holiday season and many family celebrations, The Springboard Center wishes everyone a happy and healthy Thanksgiving and Christmas. Please exercise an abundance of caution with any substance you may imbibe. If you or a loved one needs help, please text PROMISE to 50700 or call us at (432) 620-0255. Happy Holidays!!