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DuPage County Board of Health Resolution: Increase Access to Treat Substance Use Disorder

Mon March 26, 2018

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

DUPAGE COUNTY-The DuPage County Board of Health supports the treatment of substance use disorders.

A resolution adopted by DuPage County Health Department takes into consideration that more than 11 million Americans misused prescription opioids in 2016, over two million had an opioid-use disorder from prescription opioids or heroin, but only one-in-10 receive treatment.

Although the DuPage Narcan Program (DNP) saved 429 lives from 2014-17, the DuPage County Coroner recorded 274 opioid-related deaths during that same time.

In response to the most recent community health assessment, the goal of addressing substance use disorders is one of five health priorities that the DuPage County Health Department has been working to address with partners throughout the community.

Similar to other chronic health conditions, "We recognize that substance use disorders require effective and evidence-based treatment," Ayala said.

This issue, however, is not felt only in the health sector, with workplaces bearing a significant portion of costs due to absenteeism, increased healthcare expenses and lost productivity. The National Safety Council estimates the yearly economic impact of substance use disorder is over $442 billion dollars.

"Recent research indicates that one-in-three individuals know someone who has been impacted by the opioid crisis in recent years," said Karen Ayala, executive director of the health department.

The DuPage County Board of Health, through its unwavering commitment to the public's health, supports increasing access to substance use disorder treatment for the residents of DuPage County.

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