The synthetic opioid fentanyl has come the most common drug involved in U.S. overdoses, according to a new government report. The figures from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics show the rate of drug overdoses involving fentanyl skyrocketed by about 113 percent each year from 2013 through 2016. The drug was involved in nearly 29 percent of all overdose deaths in 2016—in 2011, that figure was just 4 percent. From 2012 to 2015, heroin accounted for most overdose deaths, but it has now been surpassed. Overdose deaths in general are rising sharply, with a jump of 54 percent each year between 2011 and 2016. In 2016, there were 63,632 drug overdose deaths. Fentanyl was involved in nearly 29 percent of all fatal overdoses in 2016.
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