Deaths due to drug overdoses, expressed as a rate per 100,000 residents.
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.
In 2016, Essex County had an overdose mortality rate of 23 deaths per 100,000 residents, an increase of almost 3 times the rate in 2000. This was lower than the state at 33 and higher than the national rate of 20 per 100,000 in 2016.
Among the comparison counties, Middlesex, MA (17 per 100,000 residents), Lake, IL (15) and Westchester, NY (9) all had lower rates than Essex in 2016. Rates in each county have increased slightly since 2015.
Deaths may be accidental or intentional, or this information may be unknown.