Australian prescription drug deaths increase 98% in 3 years

Dr Alex Wodak, head of the Alcohol and Drug Service at Sydney, NSW, St Vincent's Hospital: "we are very exposed to this risk".

The number of prescription drug deaths in people aged 15 to 54 in Australia has increased by almost 96 percent in three years, leading one drug and alcohol expert to proclaim “we’ve got one hell of a problem”. Dr Alex Wodak, a drug and alcohol expert at St Vincent’s Hospital in Sydney said the deaths from prescription painkillers such as oxycodone and morphine were tragic and avoidable, representing the “equivalent of two jumbo jets crashing in the air”. Researchers at the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre (NDARC) at the University of New South Wales said 500 people died from prescription drug overdoses in 2008, compared to 360 in 2007, with figures for 2010 (yet to be ratified) seeing 705 … Continue reading