U.S. Drug Overdose Deaths Hit Record During COVID-19 Pandemic

More than 83,000 drug overdose deaths occurred during the 12 months ending in May 2020, the most ever recorded during a one-year period, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Scientists think the COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated an already alarming trend in overdose fatalities.  Overdose deaths in the United States have surged during the COVID-19 pandemic, primarily driven …

Overdoses spike during COVID-19 pandemic

More than 330,000 Americans have died from COVID-19—with nearly 5,000 of those deaths in Maricopa County. The pandemic is also being blamed for a frightening rise in drug overdoses. According to a Dec. 18 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention press release, new data suggests “an acceleration of overdose deaths during the pandemic.” According to the CDC, over 81,000 drug …

As COVID-19 surges, AMA sounds alarm on nation’s overdose epidemic

The U.S. is seeing its worst COVID-19 surge of the year. Yet as the number of new cases, hospitalizations and deaths all rise, the country continues to deal with a concurrent epidemic affecting Americans: A drug overdose epidemic driven by illicit fentanyl, methamphetamine and cocaine. AMA Immediate Past President Patrice A. Harris, MD, MA, recently joined the National Association of Attorneys …

Drug deaths were already climbing at the beginning of 2020. Then the pandemic hit

The isolation of the coronavirus pandemic had seriously begun to take its toll on Alexander Joubert by the time his 21st birthday came around in May. The skate parks were closed. He missed his friends. And the in-person family counseling he’d started just months earlier now consisted of conversations through a computer screen. So, to lift his spirits, his parents …

TDMHSAS and TDH Announce New Campaign to Reduce Drug Overdose and Prevent Suicide

Campaign focuses on increasing resilience between major winter holidays The Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (TDMHSAS) and Department of Health are kicking off a new campaign centered around the risk of drug overdose and suicide during the winter holidays. The campaign, called ResilienTN, focuses on building resilience and strengthening community connections to prevent the tragic loss …

COVID-19 Could Compound Holiday Suicides, Drug Overdoses

State health officials hope to stem annual winter holiday suicide and drug overdose rates that could be compounded this year with the stresses of COVID-19. The Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (TDMHSAS) and Tennessee Department of Health (TDOH) launched ResilienTN this week. The program is focused on strengthening community connections to give Tennesseans “tools and knowledge …

Deadliest drug in disguise: People don’t know what they’re getting

A Facebook message from a grieving grandma prompted Target 8 to take a closer look at overdose deaths in West Michigan. “Could you talk about all the kids dying from fentanyl in Michigan?” Jane Toscano of Wyoming asked via Facebook. “My grandson was just 21. He took a laced pill and now he lives in the ground. His life mattered. …

Opioid overdose deaths involving other substances more common in youth

Results of a new study show that opioid overdose deaths involving more than one substance (polysubstances) are more common than opioid-only overdose deaths among youth. Led by researchers at Boston Medical Center’s Grayken Center for Addiction, the data shows that cocaine and other stimulants like crystal methamphetamine are the substances most commonly involved in opioid overdose deaths in young people …

Street Fentanyl Surges In Western U.S., Leading To Thousands Of Deaths

Seven months ago, when Jake got out of jail in Phoenix, he expected to go back to using his drug of choice: heroin. But the street market for illegal opioids had changed. “I just started smoking [fentanyl] pills because that was the thing that was around; it was so easy to get,” he said. NPR is only using Jake’s first …

Pandemic could be contributing to spike in U.S. overdose deaths

Matthew Davidson was beating his heroin addiction. The 31-year-old was attending group recovery meetings. He had a restaurant job he liked. He was a doting uncle to a baby nephew. Then the coronavirus pandemic hit. Davidson lost his job. He started staying home alone in his apartment near Georgetown, Ky., depressed and yearning for his recovery support group that had …