Drug overdose deaths are up in Minnesota so far this year. Nate Wright with the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) says…

“The increase from quarter one to quarter two was larger in Greater Minnesota, the percentage change was larger in Greater Minnesota, so that was a surprising finding, I guess from what had been expected.”

There were 490 drug overdose deaths from January to June this year–that’s a 31-percent increase compared to the first half of 2019. Wrights says overdose deaths in 2020 started to increase sharply in March–largely driven by an increase in synthetic opioid-involved deaths.