Oregon’s meth epidemic surges amid focus on opioids

EDITOR'S NOTE: This story is published in collaboration with The Lund Report.

The millions of dollars and countless hours that Oregon health officials have devoted to fighting the opioid epidemic in recent years have had an effect: Overdose deaths from prescription painkillers have fallen to a 14-year low. 

At the same time, another drug threat is on the rise: methamphetamine. Oregon’s rate of meth use is 76 percent higher than the rest of the country, according to federal data, and that’s led to a spike in deaths. Methamphetamine now kills more people in Oregon every year than do prescription opioids, state data show. 

“Methamphetamine is the epidemic that never went away,” said Brent Canode, executive director of The . . .