Opioid Epidemic Fuels Increase in Cocaine Related Overdose Deaths

According to a recent U.S. News & World Report article, the number of people dying from cocaine related overdoses is growing.  This seems to be due to the fact that they are mixing cocaine with opioids such as heroin and fentanyl.  The article states that it is not known whether people are mixing the drugs intentionally or are taking products that are tainted. 

Cocaine related deaths have risen in recent years even though there does not appear to have been a significant increase in the drug’s availability.  Per Christopher Jones, acting associate deputy assistant secretary with the Department of Health and Human Services, “when you look at cocaine and opioids together, we see a more than doubling in the number of overdoses since 2010, with heroin and synthetic opioids increasingly involved in these deaths.”