Eastern North Carolina is experiencing dire consequences from prescription drug abuse.
“With the exception of traffic fatalities, prescription drug overdoses are the leading cause of death among young people in Eastern North Carolina,” said North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper.
According to the North Carolina State Center for Health Statistics, the death rate for unintentional overdoses was 11 per 100,000 people, but was higher in the counties of Eastern North Carolina. Eastern North Carolina has seen a 400 percent increase in prescription drug abuse over the past five years. According to the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, methadone, oxycodone, hydrocodone and other pain pills were the most common drugs to blame for overdose deaths in Eastern North Carolina.