Opioid Crisis Affecting African Americans at a Climbing Rate

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Opioid Epidemic

In captivating coverage from NBC News, Jacob Soboroff reports that the opioid crisis is affecting African Americans at an increasing rate due to the influx of fentanyl to urban areas of the country.

“Although opioid-related mortality has been stereotyped as a rural, low-income phenomenon concentrated among Appalachian or Midwestern states, it has spread rapidly, particularly among the eastern states,” according to an article issued by the JAMA Network.

“The evolution has also seen a wider range of populations being affected, with the spread of the epidemic from rural to urban areas and considerable increases in opioid-related mortality observed in the black population,” the researchers wrote in the JAMA study.

Fetanyl, a synthetic opioid that came to the U.S. from Mexico and China, is 80- to 100-times stronger than morphine and can be 50% more lethal than straight heroin.

Drug traffickers have begun spiking heroin with fentanyl to increase profit and amp up the high. Many times, street-level drug dealers don’t even know they’re selling fentanyl-laced heroin

African Americans experienced the largest increase in opioid overdose deaths among any racial group from 2016 to 2017, with a 26 percent surge, as cited in a study issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The Washington Post examines the cold-hard reality in a recent article stating:

“Heroin laced with the powerful synthetic opioid fentanyl has killed thousands of African American drug users in the past several years, driving a largely overlooked urban public-health crisis. 

Since 2014, the national rate of fatal drug overdoses has increased more than twice as fast among African Americans as among whites, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The epidemic’s new casualties are seldom young and were not first hooked by doctors prescribing pain pills. Instead, they are the long-term drug users who have endured the older, slow-burning opioid epidemic that began with heroin’s spread through American cities in the Vietnam War era.”

If you are battling an addiction to heroin, call New Season at 1-877-284-7074. One of our addiction specialists is standing by 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to help you.

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