Analysis released by State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli has found that drug overdose deaths in New York State rose significantly during the COVID-19 pandemic.
From 2019-2021, opioid-related overdose deaths increased by 68% to nearly 5,000 people, surpassing the previous 2017 peak by more than 1,500 fatalities. The spike is largely attributed to the availability of fentanyl and other similar synthetic opioids.
DiNapoli’s report released various recommendations to policymakers on how to remedy the situation. That included better coordinating state agencies to improve care systems, and bolstering interventions using evidence-based practices to help stem the tide of overdoses.