Drug overdose was the eighth leading cause of death in the United States last year, according to the Centers for Disease Control. From May 2020 to April 2021, an estimated 100,300 Americans died from an overdose. That’s a roughly 30 percent increase over the year before, and officials believe this year could be even worse.
Experts point to a few things to explain the deadly spike, including the flooding of the drug market by the extremely potent and dangerous synthetic opioid Fentanyl.
But the pandemic lockdowns share the blame. Not only was the social isolation harmful to the mental health of many, but the lockdowns and the often illogical restrictions on medical care hindered addiction treatment.
The drug epidemic isn’t fun to debate on Twitter. It’s not just another political football. It is an emergency. The Church has to step in here, and quickly – not just to help our neighbors who might be struggling, but to advocate on their behalf to our leaders. This is the pandemic that’s not waning. We have to pay attention.
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