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Las Vegas’ Overdose Deaths Continue to Rise, Harm Reduction is Key

by Veronica Scala

February 10, 2022
las vegas overdose deaths

As a Las Vegas local of over 25 years and as a professional working in the field of drug and alcohol addiction, it is heartbreaking to hear how drastically drug overdose deaths have increased in the community from 2020 to date. The Las Vegas Valley saw a 30% increase in drug overdoses from 2019 to 2020, with 219 deaths due to fentanyl-laced pills specifically. In 2021, an estimated 800 people died due to drug overdose, a 42% increase from 2020. To think if drug overdose deaths rising each year in Las Vegas becomes a consistent trend – and in a valley that desperately needs more resources.

The Las Vegas Review-Journal recently published an article reporting the leading causes of death in Clark County for 2021. Its headline reads “Las Vegas drug, traffic deaths soar in 2021,” with the first half of the article focusing specifically on drug-related deaths. What other evidence do we need?

So, how can the Las Vegas community take action to reduce these numbers?

3 Ways to Save a Life from Overdose in Las Vegas

  1. Call 9-1-1 without fear of implications thanks to Nevada’s Good Samaritan Law. Did you know that Nevada, like many states, has a Good Samaritan Drug Overdose Act providing legal protection for anyone seeking help for themselves or others while in possession of opioids or under the influence of opioids? This includes administering naloxone or calling 9-1-1 if there is a fear of overdose.
  1. Administer CPR. According to an EM Resident article referencing the Emergency Cardiac Care (ECC) guidelines by the American Heart Association (AHA), if an individual is unresponsive “CPR should take precedence over naloxone administration as patients without a palpable pulse may be in cardiac arrest or may have an undetected weak or slow pulse.” This is not a recommendation against naloxone, but rather another tool to keep in-mind if an individual is unresponsive following drug use, and especially if naloxone is unavailable.
  2. Research and disseminate information about affordable drug rehab centers in Las Vegas. While Las Vegas and the state of Nevada may be known for their destination and luxury-home based rehab centers, these are not the drug and alcohol treatment centers of many Las Vegas and Nevada residents. Locals need access to affordable, and effective drug and alcohol treatment close to home. This is why Landmark Recovery of Las Vegas provides the highest quality of clinical care without the price tag of a resort treatment center. All Landmark therapists are master’s-level trained and above, and services range from residential inpatient to medical detox, partial hospitalization, and intensive outpatient programs.

For anyone experiencing the devastating cycle of addiction and withdrawal, Landmark Recovery of Las Vegas offers the highest quality of professional care at half the cost of other treatment centers. If you are struggling to cope with addiction or substance misuse, you are not alone. There are resources that can help you begin your journey back to wellness. Reach out to Landmark Recovery of Las Vegas today.

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