“There’s absolutely solid, irrefutable evidence that there are a savings – always – in funding addiction treatment and prevention. You pay one way or the other.” ~ Karen Wheeler, the Addiction Programs Administrator for the Oregon Health Authority With its unique geography –mountains, forests, rivers, a short drive from the Pacific Ocean – it’s not surprising that Eugene, Oregon, is one of the most naturally beautiful cities in America. What IS surprising is how much effective drug use has upon the local community
Addiction Statistics for Eugene and the Entire State of Oregon
For years, Oregon has dubiously been known as a leader in the non-medical use of prescription painkillers –at one point, ranking #2 in the country – and as a state where residents are heavy consumers of marijuana. This can create a set of unique challenges, in terms of substance abuse prevention and treatment. Let’s take a look at the substance abuse situation as a whole, to see what is and can be done to help addicts and alcoholics in the Eugene area.
- All Substance Abuse Among Oregon Residents Age 12 or Older
- 462,000 have used an illicit drug within the past month.
- This equates to about 1 in 7 state residents.
- Oregon ranks #4 in the US for past-month illicit drug use.
- Past-month marijuana use – 415,000 (Under-18 usage 30,000)
- Oregon ranks #5 in the country for past-month marijuana use.
- Past-year nonmedical painkiller use –159,000 (Under-18 usage 16,000)
- Almost two million have used alcohol within the past month, including 117,000 individuals under the age of 21.
- This is nearly 60% of Oregon residents, compared to around 52% for the rest of the country.
- Within the last 30 days, 740,000 Oregonians –more than 1 out of every 5 – have engaged in binge-drinking, including 75,000 underage drinkers.
- 2013-2014, Oregon saw a 5% year-over-year increase in the number of drug-related deaths.
- Methamphetamine fatalities rose 14%, reaching their highest total since 2000.
- In order, the drugs responsible for the most deaths were methamphetamines (140), prescription opioids (139), and heroin (111).
- Alcohol is the cause of 16% of all fatal overdoses in the state and is involved in many more.
- Drug or Alcohol Dependence, Abuse, and Treatment Within the Past Year
- The abuse of any illicit drug – 99,000, including 13,000 under the age of 18
- Drug dependence – 69,000
- Needing – but not receiving -treatment for drug use –89,000
- The abuse of alcohol –233,000, including 10,000 underage drinkers
- Alcohol dependence – 107,000
- Needing –but not receiving – treatment for alcohol use – 217,000
- Around 7.5% of Oregonians abused/were dependent upon alcohol within the past 30 days. Across the U.S., that number is 6%.
- 1 out of every 11 Oregonians abused or were dependent upon alcohol or drugs within the past year.
Eugene and the rest of Lane County have similar rates of misuse as the rest of Oregon, resulting in a snapshot showing how substance abuse affects the area –
- The Eugene area has one of the highest rates of excessive drinking in the state – 22%. Oregon as a whole has a rate of 19%.
- It is estimated that 27% of local driving deaths are because of alcohol impairment.
- Lane County has a fatal overdose rate of 15 per 100,000 residents, resulting in 156 deaths in 2014. This ranks #12 in Oregon.
Statistics About Addiction Treatment in Eugene, OR
The most important thing that we can learn about all of the statistics is that there is a real need for drug and alcohol treatment in the city of Eugene throughout Lane County, and across the entire state of Oregon. Unfortunately, many suffering substance abusers –an estimated 316,000 – are unable to get the help are they so desperately need. Professional addiction counselors in Oregon are severely overworked –
- Caseloads are twice the size of the U.S. average.
- Therapy groups are double the recommended size.
- The standard for individual counseling is met only one-fourth of the time.
What does all of this mean? It means that Oregon in general and Eugene, in particular, are impacted by substance abuse at a rate that is considerably higher than the rest of the country. It means that hundreds of thousands of Oregon residents suffering from drug or alcohol disorders aren’t receiving the treatment services necessary for their recovery. It also means that anyone in Eugene – or anywhere else in Oregon – who is ready to seek help for their substance abuse disorder might find it in their best interests to expand the parameters of their search. Northpoint Recovery, located nearby in Boise, Idaho, is the Northwest region’s #1 inpatient addiction recovery facility. In addition to having the best staff-to-patient ratio in the Inland Northwest, Northpoint Recovery uses an Evidence-Based-Treatment strategy to offer struggling addicts, alcoholics, and their families to guidance, support, and education needed to restore sobriety and balance to their lives. SOURCES: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2016/05/23/where-people-drink-the-most-booze-and-do-the-most-drugs/ https://www.samhsa.gov/data/sites/default/files/1/1/NSDUHsaeOregon2014.pdf 2016 Threat Assessment and Counter-Drug Strategy, released by the Oregon High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Program save