Drug Overdoses

Rhode Island Numbers

Last updated: August 26, 2015

  • The number of deaths due to drug overdoses is provisional for up to 6 months.

Policy on Identifying and Reporting Confirmed Accidental Drug-Related Overdose Deaths

  • The number of monthly Narcan® doses administered by EMS has remained relatively stable in 2014, ranging from 118 to 159 doses.

  • All accidental overdose deaths, whether caused by illicit or prescription drugs, continue to increase and remain a leading cause of accidental death, with about four overdose deaths per week investigated by the Medical Examiner's Office in 2014.
  • Accidental overdose deaths involving prescription medications, such as Vicodin ® and Oxycodone ®, are still happening at an alarming rate, yet they are not increasing as fast as deaths from illicit drugs.

  • The combined use of prescription medications with other substances, such as illicit drugs and alcohol, reveals a consistent and underlying trend of substance abuse and addiction.

  • Contrary to common assumptions, Rhode Island 's drug overdose epidemic is not limited to younger adult males. While men accounted for twice as many accidental drug overdose deaths from 2009-2012, people ages 40 through 60 accounted for most of drug overdose deaths overall.

Data Table