The United States’ drug epidemic set another grim record in October, according to recently released data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The agency revealed that an estimated 105,752 Americans died of a drug overdose between October 2020 to October 2021, the most ever recorded in a 12-month period. It was also the fourth straight month where a record for year-over-year drug overdose deaths was set. It also represents a 16 percent increase in overdose deaths within the past year.
A vast majority of these deaths were caused by opioids – specifically, synthetic opioids such as fentanyl – that have torn through the U.S. in recent years.
Drug overdoses were already spiraling out of control before the COVID-19 pandemic, but the disruptions to everyday life, social isolation and loss suffered by some Americans due to the virus created the perfect storm to exacerbate the situation.
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