DHEC and DAODAS recognize International Overdose Awareness Day
COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - In honor of International Overdose Awareness Day on August 31, DHEC (South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control) and DAODAS (South Carolina Department of Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse Services) want to show their commitment to helping to stop drug overdose deaths.
“DHEC is dedicated to continuing to work with DAODAS and fellow state agencies, as well as federal partners and community groups around the state, to stop overdose deaths,” said DHEC Director Dr. Edward Simmer.
According to the annual Drug Overdose Deaths Statistical Report for South Carolina, from 2019 to 2020, the total number of opioid-involved overdose deaths in South Carolina increased by 59 percent.
Across the state, the total number of all drug overdoses increased by 53 percent, from 1,131 to 1,734 drug overdoses.
- Nationally, to include South Carolina, the synthetic opioid fentanyl is largely responsible for the increase in overdose deaths.
- From 2019 to 2020, drug overdose deaths involving fentanyl increased 105 percent in South Carolina, from 537 to 1,100.
- From 2019 to 2020, fentanyl was involved in 79 percent of all opioid-involved overdose deaths, which does not include the dangers of fentanyl being mixed with other substances such as cocaine and methamphetamine.
“Overdose Awareness Day is a time to remember those who lost their lives from an overdose, but it also provides an opportunity to work together to remove the stigma associated with substance use disorders (SUDs) and overdose,” said DAODAS Director Sara Goldsby. “People can and do recover from SUDs, going on to lead healthy lives, which is why it is so significant that Governor Henry McMaster has proclaimed August 31 as Overdose Awareness Day in South Carolina.
Available Resources for South Carolinians:
- DAODAS: 803-896-5555
- South Carolina Department of Mental Health: 803-898-8581
- DHEC drug overdose resources and information: scdhec.gov/cope
- Recovery and treatment: embracerecoverysc.com
- National resources: SAMHSA or 1-800-662-HELP (4357)
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