Overdose Data to Action

Overdose Data to Action is a 3-year cooperative agreement that began in September 2019 and focuses on the complex and changing nature of the drug overdose epidemic and highlights the need for an interdisciplinary, comprehensive, and cohesive public health approach. Funds awarded as part of this agreement will support state, territorial, county, and city health departments in obtaining high quality, more comprehensive, and timelier data on overdose morbidity and mortality and using those data to inform prevention and response efforts.

Using data to better understand

Recipients will be able to do a number of surveillance activities to monitor and gather data about the scope and nature of the overdose problem under the new cooperative agreement:

  • Collect and disseminate emergency department data on suspected overdoses categorized as “all drug,” “all opioid,” “heroin,” and “all stimulant.”
  • Collect and disseminate descriptions of drug overdose death circumstances using death certificates, toxicology reports, and medical examiner/coroner reports.
  • Implement innovative surveillance activities to support interventions. These activities help increase comprehensiveness of surveillance data and allow jurisdictions to tailor their surveillance efforts to specific needs.

Putting data into action for prevention

The prevention component of this cooperative agreement will position recipients to strengthen prescription drug monitoring programs, improve state-local integration, establish linkages to care, and improve provider and health system support. Optional strategies that recipients may implement include improving partnerships with public safety and first responders; empowering individuals to make safer choices; and providing jurisdictions opportunities for innovative prevention approaches.

This program builds upon previous CDC programs focused on opioid overdose and injury prevention:

Federal strategy to combat the opioid crisis

This expanded funding is part of the Department of Health and Human Services’ five-point strategyexternal icon to combat the opioid crisis.

CDC’s goal is to prevent opioid-related harms and overdose by:

  • Using data to monitor emerging trends and direct prevention activities
  • Strengthening state, local, and tribal capacity to respond to the epidemic
  • Working with providers, health systems, and payers to reduce unsafe exposure to opioids and treat addiction
  • Coordinating with public safety and community-based partners to rapidly identify overdose threats, reverse overdoses, link people to effective treatment, and reduce harms associated with illicit opioids
  • Increasing public awareness about the risks of opioids
CDC Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain