According to the World Health Organization, people dependent on opioids are the group most likely to suffer an overdose. People at higher risk of opioid overdose include:
Household members of people in possession of opioids (including prescription opioids)
People who inject opioids
People who use opioids and have medical conditions such as HIV, liver or lung disease or suffer from depression
People who use opioids in combination with other sedating substances
People who use prescription opioids, in particular those taking higher doses
People with opioid dependence, in particular following reduced tolerance (following detoxification, release from incarceration, cessation of treatment)
People who inject opioids and share needles are at increased risk for developing infectious diseases, such as HIV, Hepatitis B and C, Tuberculosis, and other blood borne infectious diseases. In addition to linkage to treatment and recovery, it is important to reduce harm and the spread of these serious diseases. View needle exchange locations offered by the Chicago Recovery Alliance.
Who is at Risk of Witnessing an Overdose?
People most likely to witness an opioid overdose include:
People at-risk of an opioid overdose, their friends and families
People whose work brings them into contact with people who overdose:
Emergency service workers
Peer education and outreach workers
People providing accommodation to people who use drugs