IU Study: Opioid Crisis Cost Indiana $4.3 Billion Last Year

May 15, 2018

There’s a new Indiana University study that details the cost of the opioid epidemic in Indiana. The report estimates the misuse of opioids has resulted in more than $43 billion in losses over the past 15 years. 

The study outlines an annual average of $3 billion in losses from indirect cost associated with loss of gross state product loss and underemployment due to addiction.  

Indiana University-Purdue University Columbus professor Ryan Brewer co-authored the report that finds that another $1 billion a year is lost in direct costs. 

"The consumption of health care or acute care services, treatment facilities unfortunately correctional facilities, police," says Brewer. 

Brewer says add in other costs like death, disability and foster care, the epidemic is costing about $11 million a day in Indiana. 

The study says that between 2003-2017 more than 12,300 Hoosiers have died. 

"They’re never going to work again, so they will never add value to the Indiana economy," says Brewer. 

The cost to Indiana was $4.3 billion last year and the paper estimates about the same number this year. 

Brewer says the study provides a blueprint for communities across the state to understand the economic impact of the epidemic. 

"In other words what are we talking about here, for instance, if mayors have 100 beans for fire, police, roads – how many beans should be allocated to fixing the epidemic?" says Brewer.