Monday, November 14, 2022

Regional Drug-Induced Death Rates in the U.S.

Drug-Induced causes, predominately from overdoses, accounted for 96,096 deaths in the United States in 2020. That's more than double the number of deaths from all gunfire-related causes that year. Relative to the size of the population, in 2020 the U.S. recorded a drug-induced death rate of 29.2 deaths per 100,000 population.  By comparison, in the prior year there were 74,511 drug-induced deaths in the U.S., a figure that translated to 22.7 such deaths per 100,000 population. The drug-induced death rate in 2020 varied widely by region, with the deadliest region of the country, New England, having a drug-induced death rate that was 79% higher than the least deadly region, the Southwest.  A deeper examination of data from the National Center for Health Statistics yields the following details about regional drug-induced death rates in the U.S.  Follow the "region" links in the table below to see state-level data within each region:

Regional Drug-Induced Death Rates in the U.S.

Region Deaths Population Death Rate*
Far West 13,697 56,579,620 24.2
Great Lakes 15,891 46,834,910 33.9
Great Plains 4,542 21,481,834 21.1
Mid-Eastern 17,064 48,757,828 35.0
New England 5,405 14,847,468 36.4
Rocky Mountain 2,765 12,547,416 22.0
Southeastern 28,036 85,565,785 32.8
Southwestern 8,696 42,869,262 20.3
U.S. 96,096 329,484,123 29.2

(*) number of gun deaths per 100,000 population

Report Period: 2020

Source: CDC Wonder. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics. Underlying Cause of Death 1999-2020 on CDC WONDER Online Database, released in 2021. Data are from the Multiple Cause of Death Files, 1999-2020, as compiled from data provided by the 57 vital statistics jurisdictions through the Vital Statistics Cooperative Program.

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