Texas had lowest 2020 death rate from alcohol, drugs and suicide
Texas had the lowest death rates in the country from alcohol, drugs and suicide in 2020, according to a report released today by health policy organizations.
Why it matters: Deaths from alcohol and drugs increased nationwide in 2020 compared to the previous year, likely exacerbated by the coronavirus pandemic.
- The overall suicide rate declined but actually increased among people of color, teens and young adults.
- The report says 2021's increases are likely to be worse.
Threat level: More than 186,000 Americans died in 2020 in alcohol and drug-related incidents or by suicide, a 20% increase over the previous year.
- 2020 also marked the highest number of substance-induced deaths in a single year.
Zoom in: In Texas, the combined death rate from suicide, drugs and alcohol was 37.8 per 100,000 people, the lowest in the country.
- Hawaii had the second-lowest death rate with 40.4 deaths per 100,000 people.
- West Virginia and New Mexico had the highest death rates from suicide, drugs and alcohol.
By the numbers: Deaths in Texas still increased, just not by as much as in other states. Texas' combined death rates from suicides, drugs and alcohol went up 16% in 2020 compared to 2019.
- Deaths from alcohol increased by 23%, and deaths from drugs increased 29%.
- The number of Texans dying from synthetic opioids increased 146% to a rate of 3.6 deaths per 100,000 people in 2020 compared to 2019.
Yes, but: Researchers didn't gather demographic information by state, so it’s unclear what racial disparities might exist in Texas death rates.
Catch up quick: Phone service providers are required to route calls or text messages sent to 988 to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1-800-273-8255) by July 16.
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