Emergency Department Visits

ED Visits for Prescription Opioid Overdoses

According to HCAI (formerly OSHPD) data, there was a total of 11,756 emergency department (ED) visits in LAC from 2005 to 2020 that listed prescription (Rx) opioid overdose as a diagnosis or external-cause-of-injury. Rx opioid overdose-related ED visits increased by 54% from 490 in 2005 to 756 in 2018, then jumped 121% from 2018 to 2020, with an overall increase of 242% from 2005 to 2020.  (Figure 1).

About three-quarters (70%-84% from 2005-2020) of all Rx opioid overdose-related ED visits listed Rx opioid overdose as the principal diagnosis or principal external-cause-of-injury. Primary prescription (Rx) opioid overdose emergency department (ED) visits in LAC increased 280% from 372 in 2005 to 1,414 in 2020 (Figure 2). 

The rate of prescription opioid overdose ED visits were highest in the Antelope Valley region (SPA 1), followed by the West region (SPA 5) (Figures 3-4). 

Figure 1. Prescription opioid overdose-related ED visits, LAC
Source: HCAI

Figure 2. Primary prescription opioid overdose ED visits, LAC

Source: HCAI

Figure 3. Prescription opioid overdose-related ED visit rates per 100,000 population, LAC, 2020
Source: HCAI

Figure 4. Primary prescription opioid overdose-related ED visit rates per 100,000 population, LAC, 2020
Source: HCAI

Demographics

The number of Rx opioid-related ED visits were highest among those aged 26-34 and 45-54 years (Figure 5). Males accounted for 51% of Rx opioid-related ED visits (Figure 7). Whites (46%) were the largest race/ethnic group, followed by Latinxs (31%), and Black/African Americans (13%) (Figure 9). Patterns for primary Rx opioid overdose ED visits closely matched that of Rx opioid overdose-related ED visits (Figures 6, 8, 10).

Figure 5. Prescription opioid overdose-related ED visits, by age, LAC, 2005-2020
Source: HCAI

Figure 6. Primary prescription opioid overdose ED visits, by age group, LAC, 2005-2020
Source: HCAI

Figure 7. Prescription opioid overdose-related ED visits, by gender, LAC, 2005-2020
Source: HCAI

Figure 8. Primary prescription opioid overdose ED visits, by gender, LAC, 2005-2020
Source: HCAI

Figure 9. Prescription opioid overdose-related ED visits, by race/ethnicity, LAC, 2005-2020
Source: HCAI

Figure 10. Primary prescription opioid overdose ED visits, by race/ethnicity, LAC, 2005-2020
Source: HCAI

References

Figures 1-10.  Department of Health Care Access and Information (HCAI, formally OSHPD). Nonpublic Inpatient Discharge and Emergency Department data. California Department of Public Health (CDPH).