Dec 28, 2017

Opioid deaths expected to fall in New England

Opioid overdose in Warren, Ohio. Photo: Spencer Platt / Getty Images

New England states, including Massachusetts and Rhode Island, are projected to see about 10% fewer opioid deaths in 2017 than in 2016 after 17 years of the opioid death toll rising across the nation, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Why it matters: While the number of opioid-related deaths have doubled since 2010, it's hopeful to see states that are finding ways to combat overdoses, even if there's still a long way to go in combatting opioid addiction.

"It's a bright spot. The overall news is pretty grim, but it's not all grim," Joshua Sharfstein from the Bloomberg American Health Initiative at Johns Hopkins University told WSJ.

Possible factors:

  • Massachusetts has made the overdose reversal drug naloxone more available. The declining death rate could have more to do with this faster treatment of overdoses, which have become less likely to be fatal, than in a decreased use of opioids.
  • Rhode Island has instituted screening processes to identify opioid use and addiction among new inmates, and to offer them medical help.
  • Massachusetts was the first state to pass legislation to put tight limits on opioid prescriptions.

Go deeper

Virus vices take a toll on Americans

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Americans are doubling down on their worst habits to cope with the mental and emotional stress of the coronavirus pandemic.

Why it matters: The pandemic will have a long-lasting impact on health of the American people, in part due to the habits they will pick up during the weeks and months they are forced to stay home.

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 3:30 a.m. ET: 1,203,923 — Total deaths: 64,795 — Total recoveries: 247,273Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 3:30 a.m. ET: 312,237 — Total deaths: 8,502 — Total recoveries: 14,997Map.
  3. Public health latest: CDC launches national trackers and recommends face coverings in public. Federal government will cover costs of COVID-19 treatment for uninsured. The virus is hitting poor, minority communities harder and upending childbirth.
  4. 2020 latest: "We have no contingency plan," Trump said on the 2020 Republican National Convention. "We're having the convention at the end of August."
  5. Business updates: Restaurants step up for health care workers. Employees are pressuring companies to provide protections during coronavirus.
  6. Oil latest: Monday meeting among oil-producing countries to discuss supply curbs is reportedly being delayed amid tensions between Saudi Arabia and Russia.
  7. Education update: Many college-age students won't get coronavirus relief checks.
  8. 1 🏀 thing: The WNBA postpones start of training camps and season.
  9. What should I do? Pets, moving and personal health. Answers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingQ&A: Minimizing your coronavirus risk.
  10. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it.

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World coronavirus updates: Confirmed cases top 1.2 million

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens and confirmed plus presumptive cases from the CDC

The number of novel coronavirus cases surpassed 1.2 million worldwide Saturday night, as Spain overtook Italy as the country with the most infections outside the U.S.

The big picture: About half the planet's population is now on lockdown and the global death toll was nearing 64,800, by Sunday morning, per Johns Hopkins data.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 4 hours ago - Health