Who is the Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition?

Our mission is to reverse the trend of mass incarceration in Colorado. We are a coalition of nearly 7,000 individual members and over 100 faith and community organizations who have united to stop perpetual prison expansion in Colorado through policy and sentence reform.

Our chief areas of interest include drug policy reform, women in prison, racial injustice, the impact of incarceration on children and families, the problems associated with re-entry and stopping the practice of using private prisons in our state.

If you would like to be involved please go to our website and become a member.


Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Methadone Deaths Spike in Larimer County

Larimer County medical officials are attributing a dramatic increase in the number of deaths caused by methadone abuse to increased use of the drug to fight pain.

In 2007, 10 people in Larimer County died in cases in which methadone was the predominant drug of abuse, according to the Larimer County Coroner's Office annual report. That's up from two methadone-attributed deaths in 2006 and one in 2005.

Eight of the 10 autopsies showed that victims also had numerous other drugs in their bodies. Two died of methadone toxicity, according to the report.

Nationally, methadone poisoning deaths increased 468 percent from 786 to 4,462 between 1999 and 2005, according to the National Center for Health Statistics.

Until the late 1990s, methadone primarily was used to wean people off other opioids, said Jeremy Dubin, medical director of North Colorado Behavioral Health, which has a methadone maintenance program.

"(Since) the late '90s, with the emergence of pain specialists, the use of methadone for pain has risen exponentially," Dubin said. He added that Northern Colorado is just


The Coloradoan

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

The problem with these statistics: methadone is listed as the cause of death in this article...even though it CLEARLY states NUMEROUS DRUGS were in 8 out of the 10 people who died.

How do the medical examiners know which caused the death? In most cases ALL the drugs present had to be present for the person to die. By itself methadone wouldn't have killed them.

How do the medical examiners know that methadone was the "predominant drug of abuse"? Coroners know what was going on with a person at the TIME of their DEATH. They have know way of knowing what the persons drug of choice was.

Anonymous said...

This is the reason why we have to STANDARDIZE the way Medical Examiners and Coroners decide "cause of death" when drug toxicity is involved.

We will never know how many people truly died of overdoses when many medical examiners list methadone as the cause of death, even though the person had a heart attack-just because the person happened to have methadone in their system when they died.

jackpot said...

To the owner of this blog, how far youve come?

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