The following is a press release issued by Adventist Health Ukiah Valley:
WHEN: Wednesday, August 30, 2023, 12-1 p.m.
WHERE: 275 Hospital Drive Ukiah, Adventist Health Ukiah Valley, Old Helipad
WHAT: Substance use disorder is an epidemic that’s impacting the nation. More than 1 million people have died since 1999 from a drug overdose in the US. More than 75% of drug overdose deaths in 2021 involved an opioid.
The number of overdose deaths involving opioids, including prescription opioids, heroin, and synthetic opioids (like fentanyl), in 2021 was 10 times the number in 1999 and overdoses involving opioids killed more than 80,000 people in 2021, and nearly 88% of those deaths involved synthetic opioids.
The reality for Mendocino County is even more grim and alarming. We are #1 in the state for the number of deaths per capita this year. The rate of opioid overdoses in our county is 3 times higher than California’s average. At the height of the pandemic, 47 individuals lost their lives due to a preventable opioid overdose in Mendocino County. That’s more people who died from an opioid overdose than COVID-19 that year.
To bring awareness to this epidemic and shine a light on the resources available and in time for International Opioid Overdose Awareness Day, we will be having a Day of Remembrance and Hope. We will have guest speakers, including our Substance Use Navigation team, who will talk about resources available and how they can help. Community members will also share stories about how the opioid epidemic has impacted them and their families. We invite the community to help us remember those we’ve lost and support those who are still struggling.
Almost every one of us knows someone who is fighting substance use or have lost someone they know to an opioid overdose. Every life lost is someone’s mother, sister, brother or friend. Help us address this epidemic by bringing more awareness to their stories and the resources available so we can bring hope and healing to our community.