4 NC towns in top 20 nationally for opioid abuse, study finds


RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Nearly 16,000 people die every year from prescription drug overdose.

A new report mapped out the top 25 worst cities in the US for opioid abuse and North Carolina shows up 4 times on that list.

The report, from Castlight Health, analyzed up-to-date anonymous health data from nearly a million people covered by employer-based insurance.

The worst city in America for opioid abuse according to the study was Wilmington. Hickory was the 5th, followed by Jacksonville at 12th and Fayetteville at 18th.

Earlier this year CBS North Carolina Investigates talked to outreach groups, users, law enforcement agencies, and even the DEA about the problem.

They say prescription abuse often eventually leads to heroin abuse.

In fact, CBS North Carolina pulled the numbers and found heroin deaths in our state have skyrocketed more than 584 percent. Watch our special report here

The report also found nearly one out of every three opioid prescriptions, insured by employers, is being abused.

You can read the full report herehttp://www.castlighthealth.com/typ/the-opioid-crisis/

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