Impact of Addiction

The impact and costs of addiction and substance use disorders

The prevalence of addiction and substance use disorders in Indiana and the nation is unprecedented, leading to overdose deaths, shattered communities, new clusters of infectious disease, more children needing foster care, and threats to Indiana’s economic vitality.

Consider these facts:

  • In 2018, approximately 20.3 million people aged 12 and over had a substance use disorder, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. 
  • In 2018, 67,367 people, or 185 people a day, died from a drug overdose.
    In Indiana, 1,626 people died from a fatal overdose in 2018. Of those, 1,098 involved an opioid.
  • According to an Indiana University study, the misuse of these drugs has cost the state $43.3 billion.
  • The opioid epidemic cost the nation $696 billion in 2018, representing 3.4 percent of gross domestic product. Between 2015 and 2018, the Council of Economic Advisors estimates the epidemic cost the U.S. $2.5 trillion. 

Our national addictions crisis is complex, requiring solutions that go beyond immediate treatment or criminal justice responses to address all facets of the problem, from the social and environmental factors surrounding addiction to intervention responses such as harm reduction.