Drug And Alcohol Addiction In San Bernardino, California
San Bernardino, known for its location along Route 66, seems like a relatively small population compared to other California cities, like Los Angeles and San Diego, but it still has a population of over 200,000 people. Such a large population lends itself to public health concerns related to substance abuse like addiction, related crimes, and health conditions. While the county of San Bernardino has a lower rate of drug-related deaths compared to the state, the county has seen a steady increase since 2018. Additionally, deaths caused by chronic liver disease and cirrhosis, which are often associated with substance use disorder (SUD), have worsened.
While there are precautionary measures that can be made to prevent people from trying substances like alcohol or Opioids, there will always be options for individuals who have reached beyond the point of healing on their own. Specifically in California, the number of options for treatment facilities are plentiful. While San Bernardino has local centers for treatment, traveling outside of the city may provide an individual physical and mental distance from where their substance abuse began.
The Fight Against Prescription Opioids In San Bernardino
In 2017, San Bernardino County suffered 2.7 deaths from Opioids for every 100,000 people. This number well below the national and state averages, and one of the lowest in the country. That totals out to only 57 deaths across an area of over 2 million people. However, that number is almost double the 36 deaths that happened in 2016. So, while many areas have seen improvement from 2016 to 2017, it looks like San Bernardino County may be declining.
Despite the county’s low death-rate, the local government has put into place an organization to better oversee the growing Opioid crisis. There are 4 different narcotic treatment programs that address Opioid addiction across San Bernardino County. One of them, the Inland Empire Safe Opioid Prescribing Medical Task Force, is focused on addressing the addiction concerns from prescribers. Guidelines like limiting the number of prescribing physicians one can have and not prescribing drugs that have high potential for abuse, like OxyContin, Fentanyl, and other long-acting Opioids. While some hospitals have already signed up, the task force is trying to push the guidelines out to more across the county and state.
Despite these new procedures, there is still a huge number of Opioids being prescribed across San Bernardino. There were 1,408,704 opioids prescribed in 2017. That comes out to 660 prescriptions for every 1,000 people.
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Methamphetamine Addiction In San Bernardino
While the Opioid issue is growing in San Bernardino County, Methamphetamines are still a present issue for the past decade. Looking at the admissions to county funded treatment services, there have been over 2,000 admissions a year since 2009 and almost 3,000 in 2016. 2017 was the first year that there were more admissions into treatment facilities for people suffering from an Opioid addiction than a Meth addiction. However, when looked at collectively, more people in San Bernardino County are entering rehab year after year.
Across San Bernardino County, there are roughly 660 prescriptions for an Opioid per 1,000 people.
2014 saw the height of people entering rehab for Meth addictions, at 2,936 admissions.
By 2016, admissions into treatment facilities for Opioid addiction had jumped to 2,753. Not only does this number eclipse treatment for people suffering from Meth addictions, but that number also double over the course of 4 years.
Treatment In San Bernardino
San Bernardino is a large area with a large population. That being said, some may want to consider leaving the area for treatment. Sometimes, the person struggling needs to get away from where their addiction was born and go somewhere where they aren’t surrounded by familiar faces or triggers.