An opioid epidemic has been happening across the world since the 1990s and continues impact individuals, families, communities and societies around the globe. The epidemic has evolved from heroin misuse to the use of synthetic opioids that are easily manufactured and are readily available. Reasons for the continuing opioid epidemic are complex, and include factors related to mental health, addiction, chronic pain relief, and, now, the COVID-19 pandemic. Women have been disproportionally affected by the opioid epidemic and the physical and biosocial effects of opioid use specific to women are an important consideration for healthcare providers. Recent data show that the effects of the opioid epidemic on rates of opioid use disorder (OUD), overdoses, and the economy continue to rise, despite global efforts to understand the drivers and develop effective prevention and intervention strategies, programs, and policies.