“Despite increased public efforts to combat opioid abuse, the number of deaths from heroin overdoses surged by 28 percent in 2014, and fatal overdoses from prescription painkillers climbed by 16.3 percent, according to federal health officials.
“The bottom line is the opioid overdose epidemic has not abated and appears to have soared in 2014,” said Tom Frieden, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). “It’s clear that we need to do more.”
Frieden said the data, which was published this week, may change after CDC has a chance to review them and parse out cases of people who died with both heroin and prescription drugs in their systems. But even if some individuals were counted twice, he said, “It’s clear that the opiate epidemic from 2013 to 2014 got worse, not better.”
Source: WashingtonPost.com – December 12, 2015
See related graphs below.
Supporting overdose data and additional charts are available on the NIDA website at: http://www.drugabuse.gov/related-topics/trends-statistics/overdose-death-rates and on the CDC website at: http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/health_policy/AADR_drug_poisoning_involving_OA_Heroin_US_2000-2014.pdf
See related HHS blog – Rates of Drug Overdose Deaths Continue to Rise, More Action Needed to Reverse Troubling Trends available at: http://www.hhs.gov/blog/2015/12/10/rates-of-drug-overdose-deaths-continue-to-rise.html
The related Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) Increases in Drug and Opioid Overdose Deaths — United States, 2000–2014 – December 18, 2015 is available at: