Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

WV State News

October 7, 2013

Report: W.Va. has highest rate of fatal overdoses

MORGANTOWN — A new report says West Virginia leads the nation in the rate of fatal drug overdoses, and the rate is six times higher than it was about a decade ago.

The report released Tuesday by the Trust for America’s Health says 28.9 per 100,000 people died of fatal overdoses in 2010. The majority of those involved prescription drugs.

That’s 605 percent higher than 1999, when the rate was just 4.1 per 100,000 people.

The growth is outpacing the rest of the nation. The report says fatal overdose rates doubled in 29 states during the same period, quadrupled in four states and tripled in 10.

But the report also noted West Virginia is tackling the problem, with eight of a possible 10 indicators of promising strategies to curb prescription drug abuse.

 

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