Canadian Verus US Heroin Usage Statistics: By the Numbers

US Stats

The population of heroin users almost tripled from 68,000 in 1993 to 208,000 in 1999.

In 1998, there were estimated 149,000 new heroin users, with the majority falling below the age of 26.

In the administration of heroin, above 80% of heroin addicts inject the drug with a partner, however, 80% of the overdose sufferers is found on their own by the paramedics. According to the 1999 National Household Survey on Drug Abuse (NHSDA), more or less 14% of all drug-related emergency room visits is caused by heroin. The usual heroin addict spends between $150 and $200 a day to sustain a heroin addiction.

In the 25 to 49 years age group, illegal drug overdose is the fourth foremost reason of death, which is about the same number as motor vehicle accidents. The dependent user uses between 150-250 milligrams each day, which is split into three doses.

In 1998, 65% of the heroin seized in the United States originated from South America and 17% from Mexico. According to Drug Abuse Warning Network or DAWN, morphine and heroin accounted for 51% of drug deaths where it exceeded accidental or unexpected deaths in 1999.

Out of the 11,651 deaths, which were unintentional and intentional by way of committing suicide, DAWN received reports in 1999 from medical examiners that 4,820 were the outcome of heroin and morphine misuse, or few combination of those and other harmful drugs. The course of administration with heroin addicts entering treatment has been altering; about 74% of admissions for heroin misuse were injectors in 1993. By 1999, this had decreased to 66%. There was a raise in the rate for admission of heroin inhalation from 23% in 1993 to 28% in 1999.

Canadian Stats

By Contrast, Canada has much more limited data on the use of Heroin.

In 2012, past-year use of the most commonly reported illicit drugs after cannabis was estimated to be about 1% for each (ecstasy (0.6%), hallucinogens including salvia (1.1%) and cocaine or crack (1.1%)). Past-year use of speed, methamphetamine or heroin is not reportable. There were no changes in prevalence of any of these drugs individually, between 2012 and 2011 or between 2012 and 2004.

Use of at least one of five illicit drugs excluding cannabis [cocaine or crack, speed, ecstasy, hallucinogens (including salvia) or heroin] was reported by 2.0% of Canadians and is not different from 2011 (1.9%). The reported rate of such use by males (3.1%) was almost triple that reported by females (1.1%), while the rate of use by youth (6.5%) was five times higher than that reported by adults (1.2%). Rates are not comparable to 2004 because salvia was not included in the CAS.

Users of illicit drugs were asked how easy it would be for them to get that specific drug if they wanted some “now”. Most users of cannabis (84.5%) and cocaine (77.8%) said it would be easy or very easy to get. Results for other drugs are not reportable due to low numbers and small sample size. (ref)

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