Overdose deaths continue to rise in the US, reaching another record level, early data shows
(CNN) — Drug overdose deaths reached another record level in the United States this spring, new data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows, as 2023 is on track to be another devastating year amid the drug epidemic.
More than 111,000 people died from a drug overdose in the 12-month period ending in April, according to the new estimates.
The previous record from March 2022 was first surpassed in December, and deaths have been ticking up since. The pace of the increase is much slower than it’s been in recent years, especially compared with the steep rise in the early years of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Still, the latest data through April shows that about a thousand more lives were lost in the past 12 months than in the year before that. There were 111,355 overdose deaths in the 12-month period ending April 2023, compared with 110,394 deaths in the 12-month period ending March 2022.
Fentanyl and other synthetic opioids are involved in nearly 70% of the overdose deaths, according to the provisional data from the CDC. Increases in overdoses involving these drugs accounted for the vast majority of the overall increase in overdose deaths.
Psychostimulants were involved in about a third of deaths, and cocaine was involved in about a quarter of deaths.