Fatal Addiction: Overdose on the Rise

Prescription bottle and pills

In this CNN report by Jen Christiansen and Sergio Hernandez, the immense increase in drug overdose deaths in the United States is highlighted along with possible causes. The rate of drug overdose deaths has steadily risen since 1999 and in 2009 surpassed both auto accidents and death by gun violence. The drug overdose rate continues to soar.

In modern history, few things have caused such a sharp spike in US deaths as drug overdoses. CNN reached out to every state for the latest statistics on drug deaths, with half providing data from 2015. It found that drugs deaths continue to rise rapidly in many states. Epidemiologists in several states blame the increasing number of drug-related deaths on greater use of heroin and synthetic opioids, such as fentanyl. “If you look at the cause of death, we just don’t normally see increases like this,” said Robert Anderson, the chief of the mortality statistics branch at the National Center for Health Care Statistics at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Read more

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