There were 2000 Less Fatal Overdoses Last Year.
released the following statement as a reaction to the CDC’s data released today which shows a 5% decline in fatal overdoses last year.
“Seeing that an estimated 2,000 fewer overdose deaths occurred in 2018 according to newly released data by the CDC shows that a small skirmish has been won. While the decrease in overdose deaths is positive news, it is important to note that we would need to reduce overdose deaths by ten times that number just to get back to the amount of overdose deaths that occurred in 2015. We are a far cry from winning the war against addiction in this country. We must not forget the over 21 million Americans who struggle daily with addiction disease and need significant improvements to the quality of and access to addiction treatment,” said Gary Mendell, Founder & CEO of Shatterproof.
“Shatterproof is committed to helping end this crisis and save lives, which will take a multipronged, systems-level approach. This includes advocating for better policies and laws for treatment both at the state level and federally, having an open dialogue about the challenges people face and working together to end the stigma around substance use disorder, and improving access to quality evidence-based treatment. The small improvement in this number shows that changes in policy and an urgent attention to this crisis does work. But the very modest improvement also reveals how much work we have left to do. We can save lives if we work together and Shatterproof will continue doing our part.”
About Gary Mendell:
Gary Mendell is the founder and CEO of Shatterproof. He founded Shatterproof to spare others the tragedy his family suffered with the loss of his son Brian to addiction in 2011. He is a frequent speaker on how our society can end the stigma unjustly associated with addiction, has been honored numerous times for his leadership related to reversing the course of the opioid epidemic, testified in front of the President’s Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis and is a frequent commentator in the media. Mr. Mendell also serves on the Executive Advisory Board of the University of Pennsylvania’s Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics (LDI). He is an experienced businessman and CEO who founded HEI Hotels & Resorts and is the former president of Starwood Lodging Trust.
Shatterproof is a national nonprofit organization dedicated to ending the devastation addiction causes families. Shatterproof is focused on ending the stigma of addiction and ensuring treatment in America is based upon proven research. The organization advocates for changes to federal and state policy, payer reform, provider ratings, and provides public education through family and workplace programs.