Sumary of New open-source tool designed to predict drug overdose mortality in the U.S.:
- For two decades, the number of Americans who die each year from drug overdoses has steadily risen, from less than 20,000 in 1999 to more than 80,000 in 2020..
- The goal of the open-source tool is to predict and prevent deaths through early deployment of public health resources..
- A big challenge for public health experts is figuring out which parts of the country are at greatest risk of future overdose outbreaks..
- If we can predict where such outbreaks may happen, then we will be empowered to intervene and stop deaths from occurring.”.
- The investigators used this third wave to investigate whether a tool could be developed to predict and prevent deaths..
- “This study provides a novel, rigorously validated tool to inform policy planning in the context of overdose epidemics driven by emerging drugs and sets a new standard for the development of a data-driven response to drug use epidemics,”.
- said first author Charlie Marks, MPH, graduate research assistant, SDSU-UC San Diego joint doctoral program in Interdisciplinary Research in Substance Abuse..
- “We found that our approach brought substantial improvement to predicting counties with high fatal overdose rates compared to a simple benchmark that relied on past year rates alone….