The Opioid Crisis: A Global Public Health Emergency

Between November 9th and December 7th, 2016, RIWI Corp. conducted a 60-country study on the topic of opioid deaths as part of its continuous all-country data collection offering, the RIWI Global Omnibus.

Roughly 11 percent of all people surveyed in 60 countries (out of a sample size of almost 48,000 individuals) say they know a friend (even if a distant friend) or family member who has died of an opioid overdose in the past year. In Canada, the figure is 15 percent. In the United States, where more than 55,000 people died of drug overdoses in 2015, it is 19 percent. The main culprit for the rise in the death rate is no longer heroin but fentanyl, a synthetic drug up to 50 times as powerful as heroin. Fentanyl has brought the world face to face with a new global public health emergency.