A new CDC report demonstrates significant increases in deaths involving synthetic opioids other than methadone, cocaine, and psychostimulants in recent years. A staggering total of 70,630 drug overdose deaths occurred in the United States in 2019.
From 2013 to 2019, the age-adjusted rate of deaths involving synthetic opioids other than methadone increased 1,040%, and for psychostimulants increased 317%. During 2018–2019, the largest relative increase in synthetic opioid-involved death rates occurred in the West (67.9%), and the largest relative increase in psychostimulant-involved death rates occurred in the Northeast (43.8%).
The data shows that evidence-based prevention and response strategies, including substance use disorder treatment and overdose prevention and response efforts focused on polysubstance use, must be adapted to address the changing drug overdose epidemic.
Read the full MMWR report here.