Heroin epidemic continues to claim lives: CDC report

Heroin epidemic continues to claim lives: CDC report

Deaths from heroin overdoses have more than tripled across the United States in the past five years, the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) revealed in its latest report.

According to the report, one in every four drug overdoses (25 per cent) in 2015 was related to the illegal potent drug heroin. In 1999, the percentage was merely 6 per cent of all overdose cases related to heroine.

The federal agency also warned that adults in the age group of 45-54 years had the highest drug overdose-related death rate in the nation.

Joseph Powell, the chief executive officer of Association Persons Affected by Addiction, revealed that he was once addicted to drugs, and tried to commit suicide.

Speaking on the topic, Powell said, “We don’t like to feel pain: physical, emotional spiritual, we don’t like to feel pain, and yet it comes … I enlisted to go to Vietnam to, really, to commit suicide. I didn’t know how to stop using drugs. I was going to get either shot up by bullets or shot up by heroin; but, I was going to die.”

Now, Powell is a licensed professional counselor, and his South Dallas-based community support group is working around the clock to support addicts by showing them that recovery is possible.

Dr. Caleb Alexander, a co-director for the Johns Hopkins Center for Drug Safety and Effectiveness, said the report shows overdose deaths related to opioids are increasing at an "incredible rate"

"Each year I think it's hard to imagine it getting much worse and yet last year we had the highest number of deaths on record," Alexander added.

A report published by ABC News informed, "The deadly spread of illicit opioids were also reflected in the numbers. The percentage of fatal overdoses related to heroin more than tripled from 8 percent in 2010 to 25 percent in 2015. Synthetic opioids also took a heavy toll accounting for 18 percent of fatal overdose deaths in 2015 up from 8 percent in 2010."

As per CDC Data....

For males, the rate increased from 8.2 per 100,000 in 1999 to 20.8 in 2015, an overall average increase of 5% per year. The rate increased on average by 9% per year from 1999 to 2006, by 2% per year from 2006 to 2013, and by 12% per year from 2013 to 2015.

For females, the rate increased from 3.9 per 100,000 in 1999 to 11.8 in 2015, an overall average increase of 6% per year. The rate increased on average by 11% per year from 1999 to 2006 and by 4% per year from 2006 to 2015.

The greatest percentage increase occurred in the drug overdose death rate for adults aged 55–64, from 4.2 per 100,000 in 1999 to 21.8 in 2015, an average increase of 10.5% per year.

Rates increased for all age groups, with the largest percentage increase seen for adults aged 55–64. This age group had a fivefold increase in the rates of drug overdose deaths, from 4.2 per 100,000 in 1999 to 21.8 in 2015. Since 2005, rates have been highest for adults aged 45–54.

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