Over 70,000 people in the United States died from a drug overdose in 2017, setting a new record amid an ongoing opioid crisis and contributing to the decline in average life expectancy across the country.
Deaths from drug overdose climbed nearly 10 percent from 63,632 in 2016 to 70,237 in the US in 2017, according to a report released Thursday by the National Center for Health Statistics, a part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The analysis, using the most recent final mortality data from the National Vital Statistics System, also found that in less than 20 years, the age-adjusted rate of drug overdose deaths more than tripled from 6.1 deaths per 100,000 population in 1999 to 21.7 in 2017.
“Another year of increasing numbers of drug overdose deaths is a national emergency, that can’t be overstated,” said John Auerbach, President and CEO of the Trust for America’s Health, in a statement.
The majority of…