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OCME Surveillance Reports: Opioid-related Fatal Overdoses


Wednesday, October 2, 2019

LIVE. LONG. DC.

Under the leadership of Mayor Muriel Bowser, a public-private group was convened to jointly draft and create a comprehensive strategic plan called LIVE.LONG.DC (LLDC). The strategic plan is aimed at reducing opioid use, misuse and related deaths by 50% by 2020. The LLDC plan covers prevention, treatment, and recovery supports through seven goals with 50 associated strategies.

To read the full plan and see the latest on our progress, click the link below.

LIVE. LONG. DC.

 

OCME Surveillance Reports: Opioid-related Fatal Overdoses

The DC Office of the Chief Medical Examiner (OCME) is reporting the prevalence of fatal opioid overdoses in the District of Columbia. This monthly report contains the most recent data on opioid-related deaths in the District of Columbia. Data presented in this report is based upon accepted cases of either full autopsy or external exams. All manners of fatal opioid overdoses (accident, homicide, suicide, and undetermined) are included in this report. The report compiles data on opioids causing or contributing to the death in fatal drug overdose cases. This report does not include data on drugs detected, but not contributing or causing death. This report examines the presence of opioids (heroin, fentanyl, fentanyl analogs, morphine, prescription opioids and the general category of opiates) in deaths observed at the OCME.

Opioid-related Fatal Overdoses: January 1, 2016 to March 31, 2020 [PDF] *new*

Approximately, 70% of all drug overdoses in the District of Columbia are opioid related. The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner (OCME) investigated a total of 1205 deaths due to the use of opioids from January 1, 2016 through December 31, 2019. In the District of Columbia, there were 281 opioid overdoses in 2019, 32% more deaths than 2018.

  • Similar to the past two years, fentanyl continued to be the most prevalent opioid identified in 2019.

  • Opioid overdoses continue to be most prevalent among African Americans, males and those between the ages of 40-69.

  • However, the percentage of opioid overdoses among people 50-59 years of age decreased in 2019.

Opioid overdoses were most prevalent among wards 5, 7, 8. With the exception of wards 2 and 3, the percentage of opioid overdoses in all wards increased in 2019 from 2018.