Researchers, academics, policy makers, health care experts and anyone else interested in Louisiana’s opioid problem now have one place to find detailed information about the scope of the epidemic. Today, Gov. John Bel Edwards along with the Louisiana Department of Health unveiled a website dedicated to data about opioids in the state.

The Louisiana Opioid Data and Surveillance System provides comprehensive data about opioid deaths, emergency room visits for an overdose, inpatient hospital admissions and the number of prescriptions written for opioids. The data can be viewed as a map, a chart and/or table. Additionally, trends related to specific opioid use indicators can be shown.

Gov. Edwards said the online surveillance system is designed to be the best source of information about the extent of Louisiana’s opioid problem.

“Any strategies we implement to lower the rate of opioid addictions and overdoses will only be effective if we understand the extent of the problem,” he explained. “Much like we did with the online Medicaid expansion dashboard, this site was developed to provide detailed information about the opioid epidemic at the state, parish or regional level.”

The online surveillance system is a tool designed to help state leaders, local officials and health care providers to best understand the extent of the problem in their communities and then target resources where needed to address opioid hospitalizations and overdoses.

“In building this surveillance site, our team first met with coroners, first responders, doctors and hospitals, and others to understand how opioid-related deaths, overdoses and hospitalizations are reported,” said Dr. Rebekah Gee, secretary of the Louisiana Department of Health. “We are also working to increase access to evidence-based treatment. This tool is critical to ensuring that treatment resources are directed to where the need is the greatest.”

The site was developed under the leadership of the Department of Health by GCR, Inc. and funded through a grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Access the Louisiana Opioid Data and Surveillance System: https://lodss.ldh.la.gov

For Frequently Asked Questions: https://lodss.ldh.la.gov/pdfs/FAQ.pdf

Online training video: https://youtu.be/VohaBCCLFcM