Overdoses Increased Nearly 300 Percent in Santa Barbara
The emergency room caseload for heroin- and opioid-related overdoses for Cottage Health’s three hospitals increased by nearly 300 percent between 2005 and 2016, jumping from 25 to 96 in that period. Of those, three proved fatal. The majority of these overdoses involved heroin, while 25 involved opioids. Of the three emergency rooms, Santa Barbara’s saw the biggest jump in overdose-related activity. Cottage reported the first major increase in overdose cases in 2009, when the total caseload went from 30 to 58 overall. Activity jumped again in 2015, from 74 to 89 and subsequently to 95.