Rhode Island is the smallest state in the country, located in the northeastern New England region. The state is well known for its sandy shores and colonial history preservation. The capital city of Providence is home to Brown University and around 180,000 of the total population of just over one million people in Rhode Island. Bordered by Connecticut and Massachusetts, Rhode Island is a frequent tourist stop during the fall months to get a glimpse of the colorful foliage.
Covering just 1,212 square miles, Rhode Island is among the top-ten states for opioid overdose death rates. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), the 2016 overdose death rate in Rhode Island was 26.7 deaths per 100,000, twice the national average of 13.3 deaths per 100,000 people. From 2014 to 2016, heroin-related overdose deaths declined from 66 to 25; however, overdose deaths attributable to prescription opioids and fentanyl increased over the same two years. The greatest concern in Rhode Island is the abuse of fentanyl, which has caused the vast majority of overdose deaths in the state.
The Rhode Island Department of Health shows a gradual decrease in nonfentanyl-related overdose deaths consistent with an increase in fentanyl-related overdose deaths. The number of overdose deaths involving fentanyl in Rhode Island has increased fifteen-fold since 1999. Although overdose death rates are on the decline in the small state, Rhode Island is still struggling to get control over the opioid scourge.
The opioid epidemic impacting Rhode Island is also evident in the addiction treatment admissions for the state. For the year 2017, the Treatment Episode Data Set (TEDS) report showed heroin or other opioids to be the primary drug of abuse in about six thousand treatment admissions throughout the state, which accounted for 41.3 percent. Compared to admissions for alcohol as the primary substance of abuse, making up 24.8 percent of total admissions, there is a considerable gap between substances of abuse in the state.
In a small state with such an enormous problem, there are fewer than one hundred addiction treatment centers and services.
Few as they are, several levels of care are available for varying stages of addiction and recovery, including:
Some of the specific populations that Rhode Island addiction treatment programs can serve include the following:
Different addiction treatment programs in Rhode Island can accept many different types of payment for services, and some of these include:
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