What does this measure?
Deaths due to drug overdoses, expressed as a rate per 100,000 residents.
Why is this important?
In addition to ending a life tragically, a death by drug overdose profoundly affects surviving relatives and friends. Rising drug overdose deaths can reflect increasing rates of addiction, more potent and dangerous substances, inadequate systems to treat and support addicts, and other worrisome trends.
How is our county doing?
In 2020, Essex County had an overdose mortality rate of 35 deaths per 100,000 residents, an increase of almost 3 times the rate in 2000. This was similar to the state at 34 and higher than the national rate of 30 per 100,000 in 2020.
How do we compare to similar counties?
Among the comparison counties, Essex had higher rates than Middlesex, MA (21 per 100,000 residents), Westchester, NY (18) and Lake, IL (17) in 2020. Rates in each county have increased since 2015.
Notes about the data
Deaths may be accidental or intentional, or this information may be unknown.