SEATTLE — Nearly 2,500 people died from overdoses in Washington state in 2022, representing the fifth-highest increase in the United States, according to a report published Monday.
A report from Quote Wizard said 2,432 people died from overdoses in Washington state in 2022. The 17% increase was the fifth highest rate in the country, only trailing Maine (24%), Oklahoma (22%), New Hampshire (21%) and Delaware (19%), according to the report.
The increase amounts to over 350 more people dying from an overdose in 2022 than in 2021.
The report said opioid deaths have skyrocketed across the country since 2015 when there were 52,000 overdose-related deaths. There were 107,000 overdose deaths in 2022 alone. The biggest uptick in overdoses came at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic when deaths increased by 30%, according to findings from the report.
The Washington State Project to Prevent Prescription Drug/Opioid Overdose (WA-PDO) started in September 2016 and ended in August 2021, a five-year program designed to prevent opioid overdoses. The latest report found that opioids account for 70% of all overdose deaths.
WA-PDO's program was incorporated in 32 Washington counties through 24 syringe service programs, in addition to officers in 107 law enforcement units and six tribal police units.
In five years, WA-PDO distributed 55,155 kits of Naloxone, a medicine that can rapidly reverse an opioid overdose. The program trained 16,214 people and reversed 9,526 potential overdoses, according to an analysis from the University of Washington.