Accounting for Opioids in Orange County

Photo: DonJohnstonLC/Flickr

About 700 people die every year in Orange County due from drug and alcohol overdoses. That’s according to the Orange County Health Care Agency. Of those 700 deaths, not quite 470 were “related to opioid use.” And of those, 262 are “related to prescription opioids.”

If you’re curious about where people in Orange are getting those prescription pills, you might want to check out the Washington Post‘s new opioid database, which draws from Drug Enforcement Agency records. The database accounts for the sale of nearly 400 million oxycodone and hydrocodone pills from 2006 through 2012.

“For the first time, a database maintained by the Drug Enforcement Administration that tracks the path of every single pain pill sold in the United States — by manufacturers and distributors to pharmacies in every town and city — has been made public,” states the Post. “These records provide an unprecedented look at the surge of legal pain pills that fueled the prescription opioid epidemic, which resulted in nearly 100,000 deaths during the seven-year time frame ending in 2012.”

According to the database, 508,082,537 prescription pain pills went to Orange County during the 2006-2012 period. In California, only Los Angeles and San Diego Counties had larger numbers than that.

Actavis Pharma manufactured the largest share of those pills (181,964,342 of them). Pills also came from SpecGX (166,078,794), Par Pharmaceutical (78,935,910), Purdue Pharma (18,932,184), and Amneal Pharmaceuticals (13,311,802).

From there, AmeriSourceBergen Drug distributed the highest tally of pills (85,891,930). McKesson distributed another 83,649,260 of the pills, with CVS (81,546,300), Walgreen (69,324,070), and Thrifty Payless (33,641,480) rounding out the top five.

The prescription drugs were then spread throughout the county’s many pharmacies. Mission Community Pharmacy in Fountain Valley distributed the highest number of the pills (6,938,300). Other top pharmacies included Kaiser Foundation Hospitals in Anaheim (6,202,360), CKC Investment (apparently Ben’s Val Mesa Pharmacy) in Fullerton (3,962,640), Assured Pharmacy in Santa Ana (3,858,930), and Garfield Beach CVS (3,744,400).

On Thursday, the same day the Washington Post drug database went live, Rep. Harley Rouda (D-Huntington Beach) and Rep. Tim Burchett (R-Tennessee) introduced HR 3820, known as the Effective Drug Control Strategy Act. According to Rouda’s office, the bill requires the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) to  figure out the effectiveness of federally funded anti-drug initiatives and then publish that information online so the press and public can see it. Because, and this isn’t surprising, that isn’t done right now.

“This year, as many as three times as many Americans could die from a drug overdose as they did before the great recession: Americans will lose close to 70,000 friends and loved ones this year because of the crisis, and no community is unaffected,” Rouda said in a July 18 news release. “Yet, the federal government doesn’t properly monitor or evaluate the programs aimed at curbing substance abuse. I am proud to lead this small but significant step with my friends on both sides of the aisle, and urge my colleagues to join us in taking action to combat the addiction crisis.”

231 Replies to “Accounting for Opioids in Orange County”

  1. This is the most ridiculous waste of money. How about calling this what it is? The overprescribing of opioids is a direct result from the amer pain assn calling for pain being the fifth vital sign and all accreditation orgs looking for satisfaction of pain relief as a metric. With the current awareness opioid prescribing is lowering and a funded bunch of bean counters will do nothing to mitigate. Typical of legislative branch not understanding a problem and throwing bureaucrats at it

    1. People in chronic pain are not addicts who take pain pills to get high. Period. There are many people in pain who use alternative ways to relieve their pain as well. My concern is that this article doesn’t address the way these pain pills infiltrate the streets; the doctors who become drug dealers. And, what about the large amount of pills coming across the border into California? How are these accounted for? https://abcnews.go.com/US/border-protection-stored-fentanyl-kill-794-million-isnt/story?id=64444041

    1. Only homeless poeple? No. You are dead wrong. I know people that live in trailers all the way to mansions that use drugs. Yes the homeless are the main ones but not the only ones.

  2. Can you do an article on the leading cause of death in the US, cardiovascular disease, and that the only diet ever scientifically proven to reverse it is a whole food plant based diet? It’s the same diet that prevents 14 of the top 15 causes of death in the US.

    So many lives could easily be saved.

    Get evidence based nutrition information at http://www.NutritionFacts.org.

  3. Our ENTIRE country is literally in an OPIOID CRISIS. This does not effect a certain economic class of people, nor does it only effect certain age, race or genders. This crisis, is of EPIDEMIC MEASURE! Our Children are using this drug and our children are overdosing, not just adults! The Feds, the majority of states and even at certain county levels are all trying to get to grip on something that is so far out of control, its almost too late to try and fix. Realistically, there does not seem to be a viable resolution. So what has been the revolutionary answer to the epidemic?
    Make NARCAN more available! instead of coming up with a solution to this addiction epidemic, they are giving out ANOTHER prescription..

    So with all that being said its a pretty HUGE problem this entire country is burdened with….I don’t know what the answer is…something I do know that any addiction has the same end results.
    INSANITY OR DEATH.

  4. I gave cbd/thc gummies a try for the first space, and I’m amazed! They tasted flagrant and provided a sense of calmness and relaxation. My highlight melted away, and I slept better too. These gummies are a game-changer for me, and I exceptionally counsel them to anyone seeking guileless worry relief and better sleep.

  5. great issues altogether, you simply won a new reader.

    What could you recommend in regards to your publish that you
    simply made a few days in the past? Any positive?

  6. You really make it seem really easy along with your
    presentation however I find this matter to be really something
    that I think I would by no means understand. It kind of feels
    too complicated and very large for me. I am looking ahead
    in your next post, I will attempt to get the hang of it!

  7. When I originally commented I clicked the “Notify me when new comments are added” checkbox
    and now each time a comment is added I get three emails
    with the same comment. Is there any way you can remove me from
    that service? Thanks!

  8. Great site you have here but I was wanting to know if you
    knew of any discussion boards that cover the same topics discussed here?
    I’d really love to be a part of group where I can get
    suggestions from other knowledgeable people that share the
    same interest. If you have any suggestions, please let me know.

    Cheers!

  9. I am curious to find out what blog system you have been using?

    I’m experiencing some small security issues with my latest website and I’d like to find something more secure.
    Do you have any suggestions?

  10. After all, what a great site and informative posts, I will upload inbound link – bookmark this web site? Regards, Reader. Seo Hizmeti Skype : live:by_umut

  11. Hi, just required you to know I he added your site to my Google bookmarks due to your layout. But seriously, I believe your internet site has 1 in the freshest theme I??ve came across.Seo Hizmeti Skype : live:by_umut

  12. After all, what a great site and informative posts, I will upload inbound link – bookmark this web site? Regards, Reader. Seo Hizmeti Skype : live:by_umut

  13. Hello! I could have sworn I’ve been to this blog before but after browsing through some of the post I realized it’s new to me.兒童色情

  14. Hi, just required you to know I he added your site to my Google bookmarks due to your layout. But seriously, I believe your internet site has 1 in the freshest theme I??ve came across.儿童色情

  15. Hi, just required you to know I he added your site to my Google bookmarks due to your layout. But seriously, I believe your internet site has 1 in the freshest theme I??ve came across.国产线播放免费人成视频播放

  16. This service was fantastic! Best purchase yet! I haven’t experienced any dropped followers at all, through the 2 months I’ve had them. Also, the followers are real people, they are not bots. Helped out a lot would definitely recommend for anyone share with your friends and family!!!

  17. Hi, just required you to know I he added your site to my Google bookmarks due to your layout. But seriously, I believe your internet site has 1 in the freshest theme I??ve came across.Seo Paketi Skype: By*****@KR*******.Com -_- live:by_umut

  18. Hi, just required you to know I he added your site to my Google bookmarks due to your layout. But seriously, I believe your internet site has 1 in the freshest theme I??ve came across.Seo Paketi Skype: By*****@KR*******.Com -_- live:by_umut

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *