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Health

Michigan's overdose death rate drops for first time in 6 years

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steve carmody
/
Michigan Radio

The state of Michigan has reported its first decline in overdose deaths in six years.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services says overall overdose deaths declined by 3.2% in 2018. 

Opioid-related fatal overdoses also declined. The decline in opioid-related overdose deaths in 2018 was largely driven by decreases in the number of deaths due to poisoning by heroin and commonly prescribed drugs, including oxycodone and hydrocodone.

“This is a step in the right direction, however, there is much work to be done, particularly when it comes to disparities and access to treatment,” says Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, chief medical executive and chief deputy director for health for MDHHS.

Overall overdose death rates among white Michiganders decreased by 6.5%.

But the overdose fatality rate among African-American residents increased by nearly 15%.

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