Status: Improving


Most Recent Data:
3.6 deaths per 100,000 population (2019) *

3.4 per 100,000 *

Desired Direction:
Decrease desired

3.8 deaths per 100,000 population were caused by an overdose involving natural and semisynthetic opioids in 2018  *

Age adjusted to the year 2000 standard population.

Reduce overdose deaths involving natural and semisynthetic opioids (e.g., oxycodone, hydrocodone)

Target-Setting Method
Percent improvement


Deaths involving natural and semisynthetic opioids — including oxycodone, hydrocodone, and other commonly prescribed opioids — have increased dramatically over the past few decades. Interventions to change health care providers’ opioid prescribing behaviors and teach patients about the risks and benefits of prescription opioids can help reduce opioid-related deaths. Distributing naloxone to reverse overdoses and providing access to medications for opioid use disorder can also help reduce overdose deaths.