Drug overdose deaths involving fentanyl began increasing in 2013 — CDC

Henrietta Strickland
March 23, 2019

Fentanyl Overdose Death Toll Researchers from the CDC's National Center for Health Statistics reviewed data from 2011 to 2016.

Trump has secured a promise from Chinese leader Xi Jinping for China to criminalize all forms of the potent synthetic opioid fentanyl. And in 2016, fentanyl-related deaths had jumped to 18,335. A new report from researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention marked the beginning of the third wave of the opioid crisis in the United States.

From the 2016 to 2018 financial years, there was a 1,000 percent increase in worldwide parcel seizures and a 750 percent increase in domestic parcel seizures related to synthetic opioids, according to the White House.

In 2015, it was 8,251 deaths. Opioids are a class of drugs that includes illicit fentanyl and heroin, as well as commonly prescribed painkillers, such as oxycodone and morphine. The amount of seized fentanyl increased almost seven times from 2012 to 2014, according to the National Forensic Laboratory Information System. The report also revealed that the number of women who died due to misuse of the drug has increased, but not as pronounced as the rate of overdose among men.

WASHINGTON-One year after President Donald Trump promised the "scourge of drug addiction in America will stop", the administration says it is seeing progress. Both black and Latino populations experienced rapid spikes, with a 140.6 percent increase of fentanyl-related deaths in the black community and 118.3 percent in the Latino community.

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Drug overdose deaths involving fentanyl began increasing in 2013 — CDC

Since then, fatal overdoses involving fentanyl have doubled.

Carl Latkin is vice chairman of the department of health, behavior and society at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore. "Sometimes we have to give more", Wyse said. And when it occurs, it is going to happen more quickly, which is why it is so deadly.

He also noted the drug landscape has changed. Fentanyl used to be mixed with other opioids, but what users today think is heroin might actually be 100 percent fentanyl. "But they're going to be dying from the fentanyl".

To reduce overdose deaths, Latkin would like to see wider distribution of naloxone (Narcan) - which can rapidly counteract an overdose - to drug addicts and their families.

The report was published March 21 in the CDC's National Vital Statistics Reports.

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