You are now more likely to die from an opioid overdose than a car crash.... according to a new study from the national safety council.
The study found people in the u-s have about a 1 in 103 chance of dying in a car crash over their lifetime, but a 1 in 96 chance of dying of an opioid overdose.
News 8's scott behrens tells us how a local coalition is trying to change those statistics... the centers for disease control and prevention found wisconsin had a 109 percent increase in emergency room visits from opioid overdoses from 2016 to 2017.
A local group called... alliance to heal says the best way to decrease opioid overdoses... is to reduce who's exposed to the drug and improve the speed of getting addicts treatment.
50 07 every month there are people dying from opioids in this community."
50 12 david williams with the institute for healthcare improvement says there are two key ways to combat the opioid epidemic in our area.
44 22 unfortunat ely many people encounter opioids through just traditional medicine 44 29 the first approach is to give physicians guidelines to help figure out who should be given opioids and how much they should be prescribed 46 10 helping folks know that there may be other alternatives to use than opioids."
46 15 or if you do end up prescribing opioids you want to make sure that you prescribe just enough 46 23 or do it in such a way that you can reduce the amount they use overtime.
46 28 the second key approach williams says is for doctors, emt's and other emergency personnel to get overdose victims both short term and long term help as soon as possible 48 24 it may be that in the short term that you're helping them with their immediate need of using something like narcan to reverse the affects of the drug.
48 34 but in the longer term it's about when you get to the hospital saying how do we make sure that we connect you to our services.
To simplify things, the alliance to heal wants to give people a single entry point for treatment cheryl hancock the executive director of coulee council on addictions 56 18 "just having that singular entry point so that if they do desire recovery they are able to find that resource, easily.6 31 if nothing is done... williams says the problem will only get worse 43 51 if you look at drug related deaths in the community a vast majority of them included prescription opioids, heroine and fentanyl 43 58 wanting to reduce the potential of people even being exposed to those drugs or having a fatal overdose from that is a key component."
44 09 alliance to heal is also exploring opening a detox center in la crosse.
The group isn't sure yet when it would come to the area, but thinks it will be another key component in combating opioid overdoses.
Coulee council on addictions says right now the closest detox center is in chippewa falls.