Public Release: 13-Dec-2016
American death rate from drugs, alcohol, and mental disorders nearly triples since 1980
Novel study examines mortality in over 3,100 US counties, revealing substantial geographic differences among many causes of death
Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation
More than 2,000 US counties witnessed increases of 200% or more in deaths related to substance abuse and mental disorders since 1980, including clusters of counties in Kentucky, West Virginia, and Ohio with alarming surges over 1,000%, according to a new scientific study.
The study examines deaths in 21 cause groups, ranging from chronic illnesses like diabetes and other endocrine diseases, to infectious diseases, such as HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis, to accidents, including traffic fatalities. It explores mortality rates and how they have changed in every US county between 1980 and 2014, creating the most comprehensive view to date of how Americans die.