The number of people from a geographic area (county, city or town) admitted to alcohol/substance abuse treatment centers anywhere in the state, expressed as a rate per 10,000 residents.
Drinking and drug use increases an individual's risk of poor health outcomes, including motor vehicle crashes and unintentional injuries, and is often a contributing factor in child abuse, domestic violence, suicide and homicide. The availability of treatment can be a critical factor in helping people recover from addiction.
Essex County had 136 admissions to treatment per 10,000 residents in 2014, up 9% from 2005 but below the state rate of 154. In both Essex County and the state, heroin and opioids were the most common primary drug of use for admissions, making up about 60% of all admissions. Alcohol was the next most common primary drug, making up about 30%. Heroin was also the fastest growing category, with admissions increasing 60% to more than 5,700 in 2014. By contrast, admissions for cocaine treatment declined 62% from 2005 to 2014 to 240.
Marijuana and crack/cocaine admissions were among the lowest rates both state and county-wide, averaging only around 7% of admissions when combined.
Countywide, heroin and other opioids were responsible for the thirteen highest increases in individual town admissions since 2005 - with increases from 100 to over 400% - on par with the rising opioid abuse trend seen nationwide. Marijuana and crack/cocaine admissions had the greatest decreases, some as large as 88% since 2005.
Within Essex County, the Town of Andover had the lowest total admission rate (50 per 10,000 residents) in 2014, followed by North Andover (64), Newburyport (73) and Marblehead (75). Town of Salisbury (431) and City of Lynn (241) had the highest. Within all the towns, heroin and alcohol abuse were the top reasons for admission.
Middlesex, MA had 90 admissions per 10,000 residents, about 30% less than Essex County's rate and little changed since 2005. Essex County's admission rate for heroin, 74, was far higher than in Middlesex (49) as was its admission rate for alcohol, 42 in Essex County compared to 29 in Middlesex. Comparable data was not available for Lake, IL and Westchester, NY.
The state did not disclose admissions data for some cities/towns and for some substance categories with low numbers, for confidentiality reasons. CGR aggregated local data to produce totals for counties, but the suppression of some small localities or substance categories means that county-level admissions by substance do not sum exactly to total county admissions. National data were not available.