A new study from the University of Washington shows overdose deaths involving fentanyl are increasing dramatically in Washington State. Officials at the school in Seattle say a trend that's very concerning is that young adults under 30-years-old appear to be using fentanyl at much higher rates than ever before.

The study found fentanyl deaths are increasing every year

The study looked at deaths from 2010 to 2020 and found from 2010-2011, "commonly prescribed opioids were the most frequent opioid type found in young adult deaths. In 2012, however, heroin surpassed the declining trend in commonly prescribed opioids. From 2013 onwards the rate for heroin among young adults continued at slightly above 2/100,000 while the rate for commonly prescribed opioids was slightly less than 2/100,000. Fentanyl-involved deaths among those under 30 first increased in 2016. By 2019 fentanyl surpassed the other opioid categories in overdose deaths of those under 30 with a rate of 4/100,000 that then doubled to 8/100,000 in 2020."

Many young people are overdosing here in Yakima

The total number of opioid-involved overdose deaths during this period was 8,362. Yakima County Coroner Jim Curtice says 95 people have died of overdoses, up from 87 nearly two weeks ago.

Curtice says at least half of the deaths are directly connected to the deadly drug fentanyl. He says 95 overdoses is the largest number of overdose deaths the his office has ever seen. In 2020 73 people died of overdoses.  50 people died of an overdose in all of 2019 in Yakima County. 38 overdosed and died in 2018.

Today the number stands at 95 and Curtice says it's likely the number will grow larger before the end of the year.

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