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Overdose Deaths From Opioids Hit Record High In 2017

Opioid deaths in the country have reached a record high.
Opioid deaths in the country have reached a record high. Photo Credit: Centers for Disease Control

Opioids continue to plague the country, as overdose deaths peaked toa record high last year, according to the Centers for Disease Control.

Preliminary estimates from the CDC found that drug overdoses killed nearly 72,000 people in America in 2017, a record number and rise of approximately 10 percent. The count includes deaths that occurred in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

According to the CDC, the rise in overdoses comes as more Americans are using opioids, and the drugs are becoming stronger and more deadly.

In January 2017, the CDC had said there was a predicted 2,521 predicted cases of overdoses. That figure rose to 2,659 this year, a 5.5 percent increase. In Connecticut; however, the predicted cases of overdoses has fallen 7.6 percent, from 1,060 last year to 985 this year.

The New York Times reported that “strong synthetic opioids like fentanyl and its analogues have become mixed into black-market supplies of heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine and the class of anti-anxiety medicines known as benzodiazepines. Unlike heroin, which is derived from poppy plants, fentanyl can be manufactured in a laboratory, and it is often easier to transport because it is more concentrated.”

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