Most New Jerseyans Would Choose Non-Opioid Alternatives To Reduce Pain

 

 

 

Most New Jerseyans Would Choose Non-Opioid Alternatives To Reduce Pain

Fairleigh Dickinson University, Madison, New Jersey, December 1, 2021 – Most New Jerseyans (71 percent) who had been prescribed an opioid in the past two years recall their doctor discussing the potential risks of the medication with them, according to a recent statewide survey from the Fairleigh Dickinson University Poll, along with support from the Partnership for a Drug Free New Jersey (PDFNJ). These conversations are part of a seemingly successful statewide plan to reduce the risk of addiction, as New Jersey is one of just three states that did not see record numbers of overdoses this year.

Nearly two in five (38 percent) New Jersey adults said they or a family member have been prescribed an opioid in the past two years.

“Many people overdosing on opioids likely developed their addiction after being given prescription opioids by their doctors and dentists,” according to Angelo Valente, Executive Director of PDFNJ, “What has New Jersey done differently?  New Jersey was the first state to require prescribers to have conversations with patients and parents warning of the addictive qualities of opioid prescriptions while providing non-opioid alternatives, and this is proving to save lives.”

Given a choice, 59 percent of New Jerseyans would prefer to receive a non-opioid prescription such as Aleve or Tylenol for themselves than would want to be prescribed an opioid (22%). This difference grows wider when considering a child; only 11 percent would want an opioid prescribed to their child as opposed to a non-opioid alternative.

“PDFNJ’s provocative national award-winning opioid awareness campaigns and its long-running Knock Out Opioid Abuse town halls and learning series have educated thousands on the link between prescribed opioids and addiction and overdose,” said Valente.

Overall, more than a third (36%) indicate they have known a friend or family member who has been addicted to opioids. Those aged 30-44 (43%) are more likely than those aged 18-29 (31%) or 65 and older (27%) to know someone who has been addicted. Addiction is indiscriminate, other than age, there is very little variance observed across the measured demographics.

PDFNJ has been focused on reducing opioid addiction and overdoses through Rx disposal awareness; safe opioid prescribing education; and advocacy such as Knock Out Opioid Abuse Day held each October 6. Combined with the state’s efforts to expand access to treatment and recovery, as well as the widespread distribution the opioid reversal drug naloxone, New Jersey is making strides in educating and safeguarding its residents and families, Valente said.

Methodology

The survey was conducted between October 23 and October 28, 2021, using a certified list of registered voters in New Jersey. Respondents were randomly chosen from the list and contacted via either live-caller telephone interviews or text-to-web surveys sent to cellular phones, resulting in an overall sample of 829 respondents. 249 of the interviews were carried out via landline telephones, with the remainder (580) going to cellular phones. Surveys were conducted only in English.

The data were weighted to be representative of the population of voters in previous New Jersey gubernatorial elections. The weights used, like all weights, balance the demographic characteristics of the sample to match known population parameters. The weighted results used here are balanced to match parameters for sex, age, and race/ethnicity. Weights for education of the respondents were considered, but found to be unnecessary, as the characteristics of the sample closely matched the target weighted characteristics.

SPSSINC RAKE, an SPSS extension module that simultaneously balances the distributions of all variables using the GENLOG procedure, was used to produce final weights. Weights were trimmed to prevent individual interviews from having too much influence on the final results. The use of these weights in statistical analysis helps to ensure that the demographic characteristics of the sample approximate the demographic characteristics of the target population. The size of these weights is used to construct the measure of design effects, which indicate the extent to which the reported results are being driven by the weights applied to the data, rather than found in the data itself. Simply put, these design effects tell us how many additional respondents would have been needed to get the weighted number of respondents across weighted categories: larger design effects indicate greater levels of under-representation in the data. In this case, the calculated design effects are approximately 1.34.

All surveys are subject to sampling error, which is the expected probable difference between interviewing everyone in a population versus a scientific sampling drawn from that population. Sampling error should be adjusted to recognize the effect of weighting the data to better match the population. In this poll, the simple sampling error for 823 registered voters in New Jersey is +/-3.4 percentage points, at a 95 percent confidence interval. Including the design effects, the margin of error would be +/-4.5 percentage points, though the figure not including them is much more commonly reported.

This error calculation does not take into account other sources of variation inherent in public opinion studies, such as non-response, question-wording, differences in translated forms, or context effects. While such errors are known to exist, they are often unquantifiable within a particular survey, and all efforts, such as randomization and extensive pre-testing of items, have been used to minimize them.

 

Weighted Telephone Sample Characteristics

829 New Jersey Registered Voters

Woman                                   

53%     N = 435

Man                                        

46%     N = 379

Some Other Way                        

4%     N =  15

 

18-29                                      

12%     N =   99

30-44                                      

22%     N = 181

45-64                                      

41%     N = 337

65+                                         

25%     N = 208

 

Democrat (with leaners)           

44%     N = 365

Independent                             

14%     N = 116

Republican (with leaners)         

34%     N = 278

 

White                                      

69%     N = 576

Black                                      

12%     N = 101

Hispanic                                  

11%    N =   87

Asian                                          

3%    N =   22

Other                                          

1%    N =    9

 

Northwest                                

16%     N = 130

Northeast                                 

17%     N = 141

Urban Core                              

35%     N = 291

South                                      

12%     N =   98

Atlantic Coast                          

21%     N = 170

 

Northwest: Hunterdon, Mercer, Morris, Somerset, Sussex, and Warren Counties

Northeast: Bergen, and Passaic Counties

Urban Core: Essex, Hudson, Middlesex and Union Counties

South: Burlington, Camden, Cumberland, Gloucester, and Salem Counties

Atlantic Coast: Cape May, Monmouth, and Ocean Counties

 

Question wording and order:

  1. Have you or a family member been prescribed an opioid, such as OxyContin, Percocet or Vicodin as a pain medication over the past two years?

Yes

No                    (Skip to Q3)

Not sure             (Skip to Q3)

  1. Did the health care provider make you or your family member aware of the risks of prescribed opioids?

Yes

No

Dk (vol)

(ROTATE Q’s 3 and 4)

  1. If you needed a pain medication for an injury, broken bone or following surgery, would you prefer to be prescribed an opioid such as Oxycontin or Percocet, (ROTATE) or would you prefer to be prescribed a non-opioid such as Tylenol, aspirin or Aleve?

Opioid

Non-Opioid

Not Sure

  1. If you had a child who needed pain medication for a sports injury, broken bone or following surgery, would you prefer they were prescribed an opioid such as Oxycontin or Percocet, (ROTATE) or would you prefer that they were prescribed a non-opioid alternative such as Tylenol, aspirin or Aleve?

Opioid

Non-Opioid

Not Sure

  1. Have you had a family member, relative or friend who has ever been addicted to prescribed opioids such as OxyContin, Percocet or Vicodin?

Yes

No

Dk (vol)

Release Tables

[percentages may not equal 100 due to rounding]

Prescribed opioid in past

2 years

 

Ethnicity

Sex

Overall

White

Black

Asian

Hispanic

Men

Women

N=

829

576

101

22

87

379

435

Yes

38

39

32

14

37

39

37

No

58

57

65

79

57

58

58

Not Sure [Vol]

4

4

2

7

6

2

5

 

Made aware of opioid risks?

 

Ethnicity

Sex

Overall

White

Black

Asian

Hispanic

Men

Women

N=

316

227

32

3

32

149

162

Yes

71

72

62

*

70

72

69

No

19

18

28

*

23

16

23

Not Sure [Vol]

9

10

10

*

7

12

7

 

Prefer opioid or non-opioid

for self?

 

Ethnicity

Sex

Overall

White

Black

Asian

Hispanic

Men

Women

N=

829

576

101

22

87

379

435

Opioid

22

25

15

16

19

24

20

Non-opioid

59

57

69

57

60

56

61

Not Sure [Vol]

19

19

16

27

20

20

18

 

Prefer opioid or non-opioid

For child?

 

Ethnicity

Sex

Overall

White

Black

Asian

Hispanic

Men

Women

N=

829

576

101

22

87

379

435

Opioid

11

12

10

7

9

12

10

Non-opioid

72

71

79

69

76

72

72

Not Sure [Vol]

18

18

12

24

15

16

18

 

Known someone addicted

to opioids?

 

Ethnicity

Sex

Overall

White

Black

Asian

Hispanic

Men

Women

N=

829

576

101

22

87

379

435

Yes

36

38

32

4

33

37

35

No

57

56

57

85

55

56

57

Not Sure [Vol]

8

7

11

11

11

7

8

 

Known someone addicted

to opioids?

Party ID

Age

Dem

Rep

Ind

18-29

30-44

45-64

65+

N=

365

278

116

99

181

337

208

Yes

36%

34%

39%

31%

43%

39%

27%

No

57%

60%

51%

53%

47%

55%

70%

Not Sure [Vol]

8%

5%

10%

13%

9%

7%

3%

Media Contacts:

Angela Conover

201-916-1030

conover@drugfreenj.org

or

Rich Higginson

908-763-0857

richard_higginson@fdu.edu

 

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