Opioid Misuse in Windsor-Essex County Report

This report provides an overview of emergency department (ED) visits and admissions to acute care from emergency (hospitalizations), with one or more opioid−related diagnoses for Windsor-Essex County (WEC) residents in WEC hospitals. Local statistics are also reported for opioid-related deaths and opioid-related claims through the Ontario Drug Benefit (ODB) program.

The key findings from this report:

  • Opioids were dispensed to 27,984 individuals in WEC in 2015 under the ODB program.
  • The total rate of opioid users in WEC was 18.9% greater than the provincial rate of opioid users; when compared to 49 other regions in Ontario, WEC has the 7th highest rate of opioid users.
  • There were 382 opioid-related ED visits in WEC in 2015 which is 3.6-times greater than 2003.
  • Males aged 20-44 accounted for nearly half (48.2%) of all opioid-related ED visits in WEC in 2015.
  • The rate of opioid-related ED visits was 2.8-times greater in Windsor compared to Essex County. 
  • The greatest density of opioid-related ED visits came from residents of the downtown cores of Windsor and Leamington.
  • There were 53 opioid-related hospitalizations in WEC in 2015 which is 4.1-times greater than 2003.
  • There were 43 opioid-related deaths in WEC in 2015; 19 deaths were in Windsor and 24 deaths were in Essex County.
  • The rate of opioid-related deaths in WEC has increased by 189.2% between 2007 and 2015, and the 2015 rate of opioid-related deaths in WEC was 2.1-times greater than the provincial rate.

Note: opioids include codeine, fentanyl, heroin, hydromorphone, methadone, morphine, and oxycodone.

View the full report (PDF)

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