A new national report shows the number of deaths in Iowa from drug overdoses has quadrupled in just 11 years.
The report was issued by the Trust for America’s Health to highlight the growing problem of prescription drug abuse. Most drug overdoses are from prescription drugs rather than illegal drugs like heroin or cocaine. While Iowa’s drug overdose rate was four times as high in 2010 as it was in 1999, the group’s ranking shows only six other states have a lower mortality rate from drug overdoses.
The Trust for America’s Health credited the State of Iowa for having a prescription drug monitoring program and a law that makes “doctor shopping” illegal — so those caught going from doctor to doctor to get pain meds can be arrested. Iowa was faulted for failing to provide immunity or reduced sentences for patients who survive a drug overdose and agree to get help.