Opioid Epidemic in Australia
"69% of drug related deaths come from prescription medications in Australia"
This infographic describes what health experts have called the 'opioid epidemic' in Australia. It's an over prescription of addictive pain killers leading to a record number of deaths. In 2016, the Penington Institute Australia released its Annual Overdose Report, based on data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics. This report revealed some alarming statistics on the current state of opioid prescription and associated death.
The team here at The Back Clinic have summarised and fully referenced the results in an infographic below. If you like this infographic, please feel free to share (with a reference to this page).
Opioid Epidemic Infographic
What do you think?
The key findings from Penington Institute Australia's Annual Overdose Report are alarming.
- 69% of drug related deaths in Australia are from prescription medications, not illicit drugs
- Between 2004 and 2014 there was a 61% increase in prescription opioid deaths
- Over prescription of opioids is correlated with increase in accidental and overdose death
- Similar trends are emerging in other countries including the U.S.A
- Many opioid prescriptions are for musculoskeletal problems including back pain
Chiropractic should be considered as a first treatment option for musculoskeletal problems, with addictive opioid prescriptions considered later. Additionally, medical practitioners should feel confident working with chiropractors in reducing over-prescription of pain killers for musculoskeletal issues.
Please share this research brief with your friends and family. Simply reference either this page or www.thebackclinic.net.au and you may use this visual on your own website or to share with your own patients.
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- Harrison CM, Charles J, Henderson J, et al. Opioid prescribing in Australian general practice. Med J Aust 2012;196:380–1.
- http://www.penington.org.au/overdoseday/ Penington Institute Australia’s Annual Overdose Report – 2016. Based on data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).
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