A report from a few months ago says North Dakota had the largest suicide rate increase. Using Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) data collected between 2000 and 2016, a team led by researchers from the Boston University Schools of Medicine and Public Health found that firearms shave 4.14 years off the total life expectancy of black Americans and 2.23 years off the life expectancy of white Americans.
More than 70,000 died from drug overdoses in the U.S.in 2017, a ten percent increase from the year before. It's the tenth leading cause of death in the U.S. And for those aged 10 to 34, it's the second most common cause of death.
It is remarkable that we've never lived better - in every category - than we do in 2018 America, but many of us are struggling.
Although the USA began receiving $1 billion in 2017 to fight the opioid crisis, they should have received funds as early as 2015 when substance abuse problems began growing. One of the reasons that more people are dying from drug overdose is because of the easy access to Fentanyl, which is a synthetic opioid. It would be appropriate and fair if health insurers were required to cover this drug.
It is hard for researchers to tell why suicide rates have risen, but some suggest that Americans feel increasingly hopeless about the future.
But proven methods of suicide prevention have been identified, so we know ways to fix the problem. The barrier is that the efforts have been scaled up to a national level, and therefore both the federal and state governments need to put funds into making that possible. In order for the country's wealth to matter, though, that prosperity must reach the citizens. Let us act on that data so that we can ensure prosperity and happiness for all.