In April 2020, early signals from emergency medical services data raised concerns for increasing numbers of drug overdoses during the emerging COVID-19 pandemic in Kentucky.1 Subsequently, provisional national data for the 12-month period ending May 2020 showed accelerated drug overdose deaths, resulting in a Health Alert Network Advisory calling for expanded prevention efforts.2 This cross-sectional study evaluates the changes in drug overdose mortality rates for Kentucky residents between 2019 and 2020.
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CME Disclosure Statement: Unless noted, all individuals in control of content reported no relevant financial relationships. If applicable, all relevant financial relationships have been mitigated.
Accepted for Publication: May 5, 2021.
Published: July 13, 2021. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2021.16391
Open Access: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the CC-BY License. © 2021 Slavova S et al. JAMA Network Open.
Corresponding Author: Svetla Slavova, PhD, Department of Biostatistics, University of Kentucky, 760 Press Ave, 260 Healthy Kentucky Research Bldg, Lexington, KY 40536 (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Author Contributions: Dr Slavova had full access to all of the data in the study and takes responsibility for the integrity of the data and the accuracy of the data analysis.
Concept and design: Slavova, Quesinberry, Hargrove, Walsh.
Acquisition, analysis, or interpretation of data: Slavova, Hargrove, Rock, Brancato, Freeman.
Drafting of the manuscript: Slavova, Rock, Brancato, Freeman, Walsh.
Critical revision of the manuscript for important intellectual content: Slavova, Quesinberry, Hargrove, Freeman.
Statistical analysis: Slavova, Rock, Brancato.
Obtained funding: Slavova, Quesinberry.
Administrative, technical, or material support: Hargrove, Walsh.
Conflict of Interest Disclosures: None reported.
Funding/Support: This study was supported, in part, by funding from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (grant 6 NU17CE924971-02-01) awarded to the Kentucky Injury Prevention and Research Center in its role of bona fide agent for the Kentucky Department for Public Health and by the US Food and Drug Administration (grant HHSF223201810183C) under Broad Agency Announcement No. 17-00123.
Role of the Funder/Sponsor: The funders had no role in the design and conduct of the study; collection, management, analysis, and interpretation of the data; preparation, review, or approval of the manuscript; and decision to submit the manuscript for publication.
Disclaimer: The contents of this article are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Department of Health and Human Services, or the US Food and Drug Administration.
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