Understanding the Opioid Epidemic

Press Release

Wednesday, January 17, 2018 - 9:00pm


One of the most troubling and potentially lethal health issues in our country today is the abuse of prescription painkillers.

New data from the Council of Economic Advisers shows the cost of opioid abuse is much higher than previously thought. Opioid-related overdose deaths doubled in the past 10 years and quadrupled in the past 16 years.  The rise in overdose deaths involved fentanyl, a highly potent synthetic opioid.

Opioid abuse is one of the fastest growing public health problems in the nation. Nearly one out of four young adults between the ages of 18 and 25 have either abused or are addicted to prescription painkillers.

Beyond the shocking statistics is the impact on young people, families, and communities. The economic cost of the opioid crisis to communities has prompted counties and states across the country, including Salt Lake County, to join in suing opioid drug manufacturers.

To help address this issue, KUED is presenting a one-hour public television documentary on Wednesday, January 17 at 9:00 p.m.

The program, broadcast nationally by public television stations, combines stories of people and communities impacted by this epidemic along with information from experts and those at the front lines confronting the epidemic.

The program traces the history of how the nation got into this situation and provides possible solutions and directions for handling the crisis.

Last modified: 
Tuesday, January 9, 2018 - 3:53pm