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Medication for the treatment of certain types of cancer.

Source: Aitor Diago / Getty

 

*According to researchers, Fentanyl deaths are increasing in Black communities.

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Middle-aged Black men and American Indians reportedly have the highest death rates due to drug overdoses. According to a report from JAMA Network Open, last year, overdose death rates among Black men ages 35 to 64 were higher than any other group. Between 2018 and 2021, deaths involving fentanyl nearly tripled for this demographic.

In 2018, middle-aged American Indian and Alaska Native people between the ages of 35 to 64 had the highest rate of deaths linked to drug overdoses.

Per the study: “Findings also suggest the urgent need for education on dangers of methamphetamine and fentanyl. Reducing overdose mortality disparities may include expanding access to naloxone, fentanyl test strips, and treatments for substance use disorders to disproportionately affected populations.”

Here’s more from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):

  • In 2020, the overdose death rate among Black males 65 years and older was nearly seven times that of White males 65 years and older.
  • Black people 15–24 years old experienced the largest rate increase (86 percent) compared with changes seen in other age/race groups during 2019–2020.
  • Overdose death rates for AI/AN (American Indian and Alaska Native) women 25–44 years of age were nearly two times that of White women 25–44 years of age.

“The increase in overdose deaths and widening disparities are alarming,” said CDC Acting Principal Deputy Director Dr. Debra Houry, M.D., M.P.H. “Overdose deaths are preventable, and we must redouble our efforts to make overdose prevention a priority. We will continue to support and work collaboratively with communities like we do with CDC’s Overdose Data to Action (OD2A). Providing tailored tools and resources to combat overdose and address underlying risk factors will ultimately help reduce health disparities and save lives.”

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