Report: Number of US Heroin Users Rose 300,000 Over a Decade - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Report: Number of US Heroin Users Rose 300,000 Over a Decade

Posted: Updated:

NEW YORK (AP/WBOC)- The number of U.S. heroin users has grown by nearly 300,000 over a decade, with the bulk of the increase among whites, according to a new government report.
    
Experts think the increase was driven by people switching from opioid painkillers to cheaper heroin.
    
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released the report Tuesday. It's based on annual face-to-face surveys of about 67,000 Americans - the government's main source of data on use of illegal drugs.
    
In recent surveys, nearly 3 in every 1,000 Americans said they used heroin in the previous year. That's up from under 2 per 1,000 about a decade ago, a 62 percent increase which translates to hundreds of thousands more people, government researchers said.
    
The findings mirror trends seen in earlier reports, which noted marked increases in heroin use in people who are white and living outside of major cities, said Katherine Keyes, a Columbia University epidemiologist who researches drug abuse issues.
    
But the new report offers some additional details about people using heroin, government scientists said.
    
While heroin use more than doubled among whites (a 114 percent increase), it seemed to level off in other racial and ethnic groups, the report found.
    
But it grew among different income levels, in different parts of the country. And the rate of heroin use doubled in women - a more dramatic rise than what was seen in men.
    
For years, officials have focused their worry on misuse of prescription opioid painkillers like Vicodin and OxyContin.  Experts say recent restrictions on prescribing such painkillers may be reducing illicit supplies of them at a time when the heroin supply has been increasing.
    
Heroin has become a popular alternative. It is essentially the same chemical as that in the prescription painkillers, but it costs roughly five times less on the street, said CDC Director Dr. Tom Frieden.
    
"An increasing number of people are primed for heroin use because they were addicted to an opioid painkiller," Frieden said. 

According to the new report, the percentage of heroin users with opioid pain reliever abuse or dependence more than doubled from 20.7 percent in 2002–2004 to 45.2 percent in 2011–2013. By 2011–2013, opioid pain reliever abuse or dependence was more common among heroin users than alcohol, marijuana, or cocaine abuse or dependence.
    
People who abused opioid painkillers were 40 times more likely to abuse heroin, the new report found. 
    
The heroin death rate quadrupled over a decade, reaching nearly 8,300 in 2013, with most of the fatal overdoses involving other drugs at the same time - most often cocaine.
    
Deaths involving opioid painkillers have been leveling off but continue to be more common than heroin-related deaths, government statistics show.
    
___
    
Online:
    
CDC report: http://www.cdc.gov/vitalsigns

  • Delmarvawide NewsDelmarvawide NewsMore>>

  • Dover Leaders Say High-Crime Areas Will be Saturated With Police

    Dover Leaders Say High-Crime Areas Will be Saturated With Police

    Friday, May 26 2017 8:40 PM EDT2017-05-27 00:40:44 GMT
    Friday, May 26 2017 11:23 PM EDT2017-05-27 03:23:35 GMT

    DOVER, Del. -- After a number of shooting incidents in recent weeks, Dover's mayor and police chief on Friday announced officers will be focusing their efforts in high-crime areas in the city. Dover Mayor Robin Christiansen said the effort comes after the city has seen more than 20 shooting incidents in 2017 and at a time when the summer is fast approaching and children and teenagers will be leaving school. "We are not going to ease up on the people that are using our city to c...

    More

    DOVER, Del. -- After a number of shooting incidents in recent weeks, Dover's mayor and police chief on Friday announced officers will be focusing their efforts in high-crime areas in the city. Dover Mayor Robin Christiansen said the effort comes after the city has seen more than 20 shooting incidents in 2017 and at a time when the summer is fast approaching and children and teenagers will be leaving school. "We are not going to ease up on the people that are using our city to c...

    More
  • OC Business Owner Fined for Selling Out-of-State Cigarettes

    OC Business Owner Fined for Selling Out-of-State Cigarettes

    Friday, May 26 2017 4:10 PM EDT2017-05-26 20:10:08 GMT
    Friday, May 26 2017 11:22 PM EDT2017-05-27 03:22:32 GMT

    Ocean City Police  uncovered a cigarette smuggling scheme that resulted in the criminal citation of a local businessman for violating Maryland tax regulations. 

    More

    Ocean City Police  uncovered a cigarette smuggling scheme that resulted in the criminal citation of a local businessman for violating Maryland tax regulations. 

    More
  • Man Found Guilty of Assault After Punching Correctional Officer

    Man Found Guilty of Assault After Punching Correctional Officer

    Friday, May 26 2017 7:57 PM EDT2017-05-26 23:57:58 GMT
    Friday, May 26 2017 11:21 PM EDT2017-05-27 03:21:36 GMT
    Eric Dolby was already serving a life sentence for burning a man alive.Eric Dolby was already serving a life sentence for burning a man alive.

    A 27-year-old Wilmington man, already serving a life sentence for the 2008 murder of a Dover man, has been convicted by a superior court jury of assault in a detention facility. 

    More

    A 27-year-old Wilmington man, already serving a life sentence for the 2008 murder of a Dover man, has been convicted by a superior court jury of assault in a detention facility. 

    More
  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Man Found Guilty of Assault After Punching Correctional Officer

    Man Found Guilty of Assault After Punching Correctional Officer

    Friday, May 26 2017 7:57 PM EDT2017-05-26 23:57:58 GMT
    Friday, May 26 2017 11:21 PM EDT2017-05-27 03:21:36 GMT
    Eric Dolby was already serving a life sentence for burning a man alive.Eric Dolby was already serving a life sentence for burning a man alive.

    A 27-year-old Wilmington man, already serving a life sentence for the 2008 murder of a Dover man, has been convicted by a superior court jury of assault in a detention facility. 

    More

    A 27-year-old Wilmington man, already serving a life sentence for the 2008 murder of a Dover man, has been convicted by a superior court jury of assault in a detention facility. 

    More
  • Teen Hospitalized After OC Hotel Fall

    Teen Hospitalized After OC Hotel Fall

    Thursday, May 25 2017 9:48 PM EDT2017-05-26 01:48:06 GMT
    Friday, May 26 2017 7:22 AM EDT2017-05-26 11:22:21 GMT

    Ocean City police say a 17-year-old boy was hospitalized after falling from an unknown height at a hotel in Ocean City on Thursday afternoon.

    More

    Ocean City police say a 17-year-old boy was hospitalized after falling from an unknown height at a hotel in Ocean City on Thursday afternoon.

    More
  • Maryland State Police Make Large-Scale Drug Bust Spanning 5 Counties, Including Del

    Maryland State Police Make Large-Scale Drug Bust Spanning 5 Counties, Including Del

    Friday, May 26 2017 8:38 AM EDT2017-05-26 12:38:42 GMT
    Friday, May 26 2017 8:46 AM EDT2017-05-26 12:46:05 GMT

    Maryland State Police and several other law enforcement agencies arrested 18 people in four Maryland counties and one Delaware county, connected to a large scale distribution of opioids, in which police say an estimated $130,000 worth of drugs were recovered along with $98,000 in cash.

    More

    Maryland State Police and several allied law enforcement agencies arrested 18 people in four Maryland counties and one Delaware county, connected to a large-scale distribution of opioids, in which police say an estimated $130,000 worth of drugs were recovered along with $98,000 in cash.

    More
Powered by Frankly

All content © Copyright 2000 - 2017 WBOC. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices