Fatal drug overdoses nearly tripled between 1999 and 2014, according to the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report released today by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Opioid-related fatal overdoses accounted for nearly 61 percent of the total number of fatal overdoses in 2014 and accounted for more than 63 percent of the fatal overdoses that occurred in 2015.

Deaths from heroin and synthetic opioids other than methadone “increased sharply overall and across many states,” the report stated. Between 2014 and 2015, fatal overdoses involving synthetic opioids other than methadone increased by 71.2 percent.

The overdose death rate increased to 16.3 per 100,000 in 2015, from 12.3 per 100,000 in 2010. Thirty states and the District of Columbia saw their death rates increase, while death rates remained stable in 19 states.

States with the largest percentage increases related to opioid deaths between 2010 and 2015 were New York at a 135 percent increase, Connecticut at a 126 percent increase, and Illinois at a 120 percent increase.

States, which experienced the largest percentage increases in heroin-related deaths were South Carolina at a 57 percent increase, North Carolina at a 46 percent increase and Tennessee, where heroin-related deaths increased more than 43 percent.

Data from the report also demonstrated that… (continue reading)