A record number of Americans died from drug overdoses in 2020 amid the COVID-19 pandemic, provisional data show.
Last year, more than 93,300 fatalities occurred, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) revealed on Wednesday.
This represents a nearly 30 percent rise from the roughly 72,100 drug overdose deaths that were recorded in 2019.
The spike was mainly driven by increased use of opioids and specifically fentanyl, the synthetic opioid 100 times stronger than morphine.
The pandemic has created the perfect breeding ground for addiction with many turning to opioids to cope with job losses and the deaths of loved ones to the programs being canceled or replaced with telemedicine for those trying to maintain sobrietyInsurance Loans Mortgage Attorney Credit Lawyer
Provisional CDC data show there were 93,331 drug overdose deaths recorded in the U.S. in 2020, a 29.4% jump from 72,151 deaths reported in 2019
For the advisory, the CDC looked at death records received and processed by the NCHS this year.
They looked at deaths from the 12-months ending in December 2019 to the 12-months ending in December 2020.
Results showed that 93,331 drug overdose deaths were recorded in 2020, which is a 29.4 percent jump from the 72,151 deaths reported in 2019.
The team found that the overdose deaths were mainly driven by opioids, which were responsible for 74 percent, or 69,710 fatalities.
The figure is a massive jump of 36 percent from the 50,963 overdose deaths recorded in 2019.
Counties in states such as California and Nevada say much of it is driven by fentanyl, the synthetic opioid 100 times stronger than morphine. Pictured: A woman tends to a luminary during a vigil in remembrance of victims of overdose deaths in Gloucester, Massachusetts, August 31
Prescription opioids and illicit drugs have become incredibly pervasive throughout the US, and things are only getting worse.Insurance Loans Mortgage Attorney Credit Lawyer