REPORT: Indian River County prescribed 42M opioid pills over 6 years

Hydrocodone [Image Courtesy: DEA]

Over the course of six years, between 2006 and 2012, nearly 42 million pain pills were prescribed to patients in Indian River County. The numbers were released following a battle between the Washington Post and the federal government to gain access to the DEA’s database.

If the 41.98 million opiods had been distributed equally among every resident of Indian River County (including children), each person would have received approximately 44 pills each year – a total of about 250.

By comparison, both Brevard and St. Lucie counties were more heavily prescribed. Brevard recorded nearly 184 million pills over the same six-year period; St. Lucie saw almost 65 million pills.

Brevard residents, had the drugs been equally distributed, would have received 48 pills each year, a total of 288. St. Lucie residents would have received 34 pills each year, or 204.

In Indian River County, four different Walgreens pharmacies account for the top five pharmacies filling the prescriptions. Of those, three are in Vero Beach and the other is in Sebastian. Other pharmacies that filled opioid prescriptions include Perkins, Bay Street, Wal-Mart, CVS, Winn-Dixie, Publix, Target, and Treasure Coast Community Health, as well as individual doctors.

To explore the database the Washington Post made public, click HERE.

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