skip to main content
skip to newscasts

Sunday, April 21, 2024

Public News Service Logo
facebook instagram linkedin reddit youtube twitter
view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

Tribal advocates keep up legal pressure for fair political maps; 12-member jury sworn in for Trump's historic criminal trial; the importance of healthcare decision planning; and a debt dilemma: poll shows how many people wrestle with college costs.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

Civil rights activists say a court ruling could end the right to protest in three southern states, a federal judge lets January 6th lawsuits proceed against former President Trump, and police arrest dozens at a Columbia University Gaza protest.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

Wyoming needs more educators who can teach kids trade skills, a proposal to open 40-thousand acres of an Ohio forest to fracking has environmental advocates alarmed and rural communities lure bicyclists with state-of-the-art bike trail systems.

New Tool Examines Financial Cost of Opioid Crisis in VA

play audio
Play

Tuesday, November 1, 2022   

A new tool is calculating the financial impact of the opioid crisis in Virginia. The opioid cost calculator opioid cost calculator developed by the Virginia Department of Health and Virginia Commonwealth University, demonstrates the monetary impacts of the opioid epidemic on Virginians in 2020. It tracks different categories such as lost labor, health care, crime, household costs, and state and federal costs. In total, the state's staring at a price tag of $3.5-billion. Derek Chapman, interim director of Virginia Commonwealth University's Center on Society and Health identified the largest costs of the opioid crisis in the state.

"The largest costs, actually, of that $3.5 billion comes from households, actually," Chapman said. "So, that's lost workforce productivity, lost labor costs from people unable to work, either, obviously due to passing away, but also unable to work because of opioid addiction. Those lost labor costs were $2.3-billion."

Chapman said there are some things you can't put a dollar amount on such as the value of those lives lost to opioid overdoses. However, according to the opioid cost calculator, the labor losses relating to overdoses
amounted to $1.9-billion.

Although the opioid cost calculator is still relatively new, the teams that worked on it have hopes for its future. Lauren Yerkes, injury and violence prevention senior epidemiologist with the Virginia Department of Health, said this as a way to keep the conversation about the opioid crisis alive. She hopes this will inform people about how to work together with policymakers in their communities on how to reduce the opioid cost burden. Yerkes talked about what comes next.

"We are hoping to continue to have as many people look and see the opioid cost calculator," Yerkes said. "Right now, we recognize that we are in 2022, and 2020 data is on the cost calculator, so our next step is to provide even more recent data moving forward."

She wants the cost calculator to include the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the opioid crisis. Given that opioid overdoses rose at the beginning of the pandemic, Yerkes added this will push costs up further. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, more than 68,000 people died of opioid overdoses nationwide.


get more stories like this via email
more stories
The Bureau of Land Management's newly issued Public Lands Rule is designed to safeguard cultural resources such as New Mexico's Chaco Culture National Park. (Photo courtesy SallyPaez)

Environment

play sound

Balancing the needs of the many with those who have traditionally reaped benefits from public lands is behind a new rule issued Thursday by the Bureau…


Health and Wellness

play sound

Alzheimer's disease is the eighth-leading cause of death in Pennsylvania. A documentary on the topic debuts Saturday in Pittsburgh. "Remember Me: …

Social Issues

play sound

April is Financial Literacy Month, when the focus is on learning smart money habits but also how to protect yourself from fraud. One problem on the …


Outdoor recreation added $11.7 million to the Arizona economy in 2022, according to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

play sound

Arizona conservation groups and sportsmen alike say they're pleased the Bureau of Land Management will now recognize conservation as an integral part …

play sound

Across the U.S., most political boundaries tied to the 2020 Census have been in place for a while, but a national project on map fairness for …

The 2023 Annie E. Casey Foundation Data Book ranked Arkansas 37th in the nation for education, and said 56% of young children were not in preschool programs to help get them ready for school. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

play sound

The need for child care and early learning is critical, especially in rural Arkansas. One nonprofit is working to fill those gaps by giving providers …

Environment

play sound

An annual march for farmworkers' rights is being held Sunday in northwest Washington. This year, marchers are focusing on the conditions for local …

Social Issues

play sound

A new Gallup and Lumina Foundation poll unveils a concerning reality: Hoosiers may lack clarity about the true cost of higher education. The survey …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021