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The Opioid Epidemic in Arkansas


he opioid crisis has escalated to touch every corner of the nation. Between 1999 and 2015, more than 560,000 Americans died due to drug over- doses. Most of those overdoses were linked to opioids. In 2016, the number of opioid-related deaths in Arkansas was 335. That year 235.9 million pills were sold in this state. Gov. Asa Hutchinson called the current opioid epidemic “one of the deadliest drug epidemics in Ameri- can history, affecting every sex, race, class and age.” It is a problem that started in doctor’s offices and hospitals, and affects people of all ages and backgrounds. Now it is taxing local government resources. On the pages that fol- low, we offer information about the opioid crisis from a local, state and national perspective.


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