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NEW: Spike in Drug Overdose Deaths Reported by HEALTH

Friday, January 17, 2014

 

There have been 22 deaths from apparent accidental drug overdose since the first of the year, the Rhode Island Department of Health (HEALTH) reported Friday.

This number is double the number of deaths seen for this same time period last year. The deaths were geographically spread throughout the Ocean State, and the age range of the decedents is 20-62 years old. The deaths happened most frequently on weekends, with 18 of the 22 happening between Fridays and Mondays. Tests are still pending on the specific substances involved.

The figures were announced at HEALTH by Michael Fine, M.D., Director of Health. He was joined by Craig S. Stenning, Director of Rhode Island Department of Behavioral Healthcare, Developmental Disabilities and Hospitals, and Lt. Robert S. Wall of the Rhode Island State Police.

The three also highlighted the State’s Good Samaritan Drug Overdose Prevention Act. This law provides some legal immunity to people who call 911 to report drug overdoses. This law is intended to encourage people to report drug overdoses as soon as possible, even if drugs are present at the scene.

Those addicted to drugs, or those who know someone who is addicted, are encouraged to learn about Narcan (Naloxone), an emergency antidote to opioid overdose. Narcan can be used in emergency situations to potentially reverse the effects of drug overdose. It is available without a prescription at all Walgreens pharmacies in Rhode Island.

Learn more about treatment for drug addiction here

 

Related Slideshow: 13 Biggest Healthcare Stories in RI in 2013

The most import stories from one of the most historic years in memory for Rhode Island healthcare.

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13 Doctors Behaving Badly

Rhode Island Doctors Behaving Badly

Doctors, having professed in their professional lives to "do no harm," are typically looked at in their personal lives as upstanding citizens.  But 2013 proved that not all doctors are cut from the same cloth.

With charges ranging from unprofessional behavior in the office to giving morphine to babies to breaking into a residence without permission at 3 in the morning and being in possession of marijuana, this breakdown of reprimanded doctors in 2013 is simply a must see. 

Click here for a slideshow of all the stories.

Prev Next

12 Staying Healthy + Fit

10 Ways To Stay Healthy + Fit This Summer—Miriam Experts

Summer brings soaring temperatures, family cookouts and tempting warm-weather treats like ice cream and margaritas, and can easily sabotage your fitness and diet plans. That’s why leading nutrition and exercise experts at The Miriam Hospital shared their timeless top tips for staying fit and eating healthy while still having fun in the sun.

Summer fitness never goes out of style. Click here for tips you can use every year to maintain that beach body!

Prev Next

11 Well-Being Index

How Happy Is Rhode Island—Latest Gallup Well-Being Index

Rhode Island may need an attitude adjustment, according to the latest Well-Being Index numbers from Gallup-Healthways. The state's latest ranking for happiness is #37 in the nation, a drop of 2 spots from last year. And that ranking was a drop from the year before.

Click here for the full breakdown.

Prev Next

10 Retail Insurance

Smart Benefits: Health Insurers Go Retail

Healthcare reform has brought about lots of changes to the procurement of individual and family plans. Now, when you head to the mall, you'll be able to buy health insurance in addition to shopping for clothes. In a move that continues to gain steady momentum, leading health insurers across the country are opening retail stores to cater to individuals who now have to purchase health insurance on their own because of healthcare reform.

To see which insurer has already opened up a retail outlet in RI, click here.

Prev Next

9 A Healthier You in 2013

13 Ways To Be Healthier in RI in 2013

As we embarked on 2013,  Rhode Island's Director of Health, Michael Fine, MD, encouraged Rhode Islanders to make health and wellness a priority in the new year. Check out the 13 steps he recommended Rhode Islanders take to get and stay well in the new year. Whether you stuck to them or not in 2013, we find ourselves at another time for goal-setting and resolutions. Brush up on your healthy living and put your knowledge to good use in 2014!

Click here for the tips!

Prev Next

8 RI’s Sexual Health

Rhode Island’s Sexual Health Worst In New England—New Ranking

Rhode Island's abysmal showing in the 2013 Sexual Health Rankings landed them at last place in New England.

The first-ever assessment of state-by-state data on 26 comprehensive health and services measures that speak to sexual health put the Ocean State at #19 overall in the US, and #6 among New England states. 

Click here for our full coverage of our study.

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7 Deloitte's Big Contract

Deloitte Awarded $105 Million Contract to Create New Healthcare System

Last January, Governor Lincoln Chafee announced that the State had awarded a $105 million contract to Deloitte Consulting to create the technology infrastructure to modernize the way the state administers Medicaid and other human service programs, and, most importantly, to create Rhode Island’s Health Benefits Exchange in compliance with the Affordable Care Act. Do you think Deloitte was the right choice? Read on for a breakdown of why Deloitte was chosen and the outlook on the exchange - who's rollout was not without its hiccups - while it was in just the conception phase.

Click here for our coverage of the announcement.

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6 Non-Profit Hospital CEO

Rhode Island Non-Profit Hospital CEOs Criticized For Big Paychecks

The American healthcare system may be quite deathly ill. But the paychecks CEOs of Rhode Island non-profit hospitals are quite healthy.

Because of the trend of for-profit chains buying non-profit hospitals, which has swept the nation over the last decade or so, only eight non-profit hospital groups remain in the Ocean State. Together, they control a total of 11 hospitals.

And you won't believe how handsomely the CEOs of these hospitals are paid.

Click here for the full breakdown.

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5 Healthiest Counties

Rankings: Where the Healthiest Rhode Islanders Live

Where do the healthiest residents in Rhode Island live? According to 2013 rankings by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, a national foundation focused on improving public health, Bristol County took top honors -- while Providence County was the bottom of the list of the five counties in the state.

Click here to get the full story.

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4 Health Exchange Rebrand

Rhode Island’s First Health Benefits Exchange Launches

In July, The Rhode Island Health Benefits Exchange announced a number of important updates and initiatives – including a new name and the creation of 70-100 new jobs – in preparation to enroll Rhode Islanders in quality affordable health insurance plans starting on October 1, 2013.

Dubbing the Health Exchange HealthSource RI and announcing the state's new contact center in Providence, the exchange announced it would employ 70-100 Rhode Islanders when fully operational who would be accessible to  individuals and small employers to talk in-person or over the phone with engagement specialists who would provide personalized assistance in finding, comparing, and purchasing health insurance options available through HealthSource RI. 

Click here to read more about the announcement.

Prev Next

3 Heart Health

RI’s Go Red Day 2013: 10 Ways Women Can Keep Their Hearts Healthy

According to the AHA, nearly half of American women do not know that heart disease is their No. 1 killer, and less than half know the best blood pressure and cholesterol levels for cardiovascular health. Making red visible on Mondays could help sound the alarm and keep heart health ever present in the lives of American women.

Click here for 10 ways women can keep their hearts healthy.

Prev Next

2 Health Exchange Launch

Healthsource RI Announces Health Benefits Exchange Rates

In late August, HealthSource RI announced the plans and rates that were to be offered through the state's health benefits exchange when open enrollment began on October 1 for individuals and small businesses. Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island, United HealthCare, and Neighborhood Health Plan of Rhode Island all signed on to offer 28 plans through the exchange.

The exchange launched on October 1st with no shortage of hiccups, but the launch was relatively smooth by comparison to those in states whose exchanges were facilitated federally. By November, the exchange had processed over 4500 applicants. And by December the New York Times noted that the RI exchange was the second-best performing in the country with enrollment exceeding target rates by a sizeable margin.

Click here for our coverage of the rate announcements.

Prev Next

1 Patients Rank Hospitals

New England’s Best Hospitals Rated By Patients

Traditionally, hospitals are rated and ranked on a combination of sound technical care, adequate resources, and impressive statistics. But an increasing emphasis is being placed on perhaps one of the more important measures: the patient’s perspective. With that in mind, GoLocal has sifted through and analyzed the results from a government-sponsored survey of more than 50,000 patients in 176 hospitals in New England (full chart here), and emerged with the first-ever patient-based ranking of the region’s top hospitals.

GoLocal consulted with patients, experts, and hospital administrators for their take to contextualize the rankings- click here to read the story.

Click here for the ranking of New England's Top 20 Hospitals

 
 

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Comments:

Apparently there was an ambulance at Therapy's opening night (1/18). Will there be any coverage of the opening of this all night rave in Olneyville on this site and it's potential to contribute to this already high number?

Comment #1 by Renee Doucette on 2014 01 21




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