As more babies are born addicted to opioids, rural communities are being hit the hardest, according to a new study from a University of Michigan pediatrician.
Between 2004 and 2013, urban areas saw a four-fold increase in babies born with Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (that’s the clinical term for a baby born addicted to opioids, including heroin and some prescription painkillers). Rural areas saw a seven-fold surge.
Those rural moms were also more likely to struggle financially and have less access to mental health care, says the study’s author, University of Michigan C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital Dr. Nicole Villapiano.