Try our corporate solution for free!
(212) 419-8286

Drug overdose death rate U.S. 2018, by state

West Virginia is currently the state with the highest drug overdose death rate in the United States, with almost 52 deaths per 100,000 population in 2018. Although West Virginia had the highest drug overdose death rate at that time, California was the state where the most people died from drug overdose. In 2018, around 5,348 people in California died from a drug overdose.

The main perpetrator

Opioids account for the majority of all drug overdose deaths in the U.S. Opioids include both illegal drugs such as heroin, as well as legal prescription drugs like fentanyl and oxycodone. The abuse of prescription opioids and heroin have both increased in recent years leading to an increased number of drug overdose deaths. In 2018, the death rate from heroin overdose was almost 5 per 100,000 population, while in 2010 there was only 1 death from heroin overdose per 100,000 population.

Opioid epidemic

The sharp rise in overdose deaths from opioids have led many to declare the United States is currently experiencing an opioid epidemic or opioid crisis. The causes of this epidemic are complicated but involve a combination of a rise in dispensed prescriptions, irresponsible marketing from pharmaceutical companies, a lack of physician-patient communication, increased social acceptance of prescription drugs, and an increased supply of cheap and potent heroin on the streets. A recent poll found that an increasing number of Americans feel opioids are a serious problem in their community.

Drug overdose death rate in the United States in 2018, by state

Exclusive Premium statistic

You need a Single Account for unlimited access.

  • Full access to 1m statistics

  • Incl. source references

  • Available to download in PNG, PDF, XLS format

Single Account

$39 $59 per month *
in the first 12 months
33% discount until March 31st
*Duration: 12 months, billed annually, single license

Access to this and all other statistics on 80,000 topics from

$468 / Year
$708 / Year

Show detailed source information?
Register for free
Already a member?
Log in

Release date

January 2020


United States

Survey time period


Statista Accounts: Access All Statistics. Starting from $468 / Year
Basic Account
Get to know the platform

You only have access to basic statistics.
This statistic is not included in your account.

Single Account
The ideal entry-level account for individual users
  • Instant access to 1m statistics
  • Download in XLS, PDF & PNG format
  • Detailed references
$59 $39 / Month *
in the first 12 months
Corporate Account
Full access

Corporate solution including all features.

* Prices do not include sales tax.

Statistics on "Drug use in the U.S."

Statista Accounts: Access All Statistics. Starting from $468 / Year
Learn more about how Statista can support your business.