2016 Tri-County Region Opioid Trends

Clackamas, Multnomah, and Washington, Oregon

The purpose of the 2016 Tri-County Region Opioid Trends report is to provide the public,
community advocates, physical and behavioral health providers, and policy makers with
accurate quantitative data about a pervasive problem. The report is organized in five
chapters: fatal overdoses, 9-1-1 overdose responses (non-fatal overdoses), opioid
prescribing trends, syringe exchange trends and client survey, and substance use
treatment. In the report, the key points of each chapter are summarized
alongside considerations for future policy; in the discussion section, we identify data
gaps and analytic challenges.

While deaths have diminished since the peak in 2011, we are disappointed to report
there has been little decrease in fatal overdoses in the Tri-County region over the last
three years. Although half of all opioid deaths are caused by prescription pain pills, legal
opioid prescribing remains persistently high; more than one in five people in the region
receives an opioid prescription every year. Although our efforts at harm reduction
through syringe exchange prevent the spread of HIV and hepatitis C, the high demand for
syringes suggests that injection drug use may be increasing. Finally, we are deeply
concerned that many of those suffering from addiction want treatment to reach longterm
recovery but do not receive it.

The full report is available as a downloadable PDF to the right of this Page