Drug overdose deaths spiked during the pandemic
Illustration: Getty Images
Drug overdose deaths rose dramatically during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Why you should know: More than 95,000 Americans died from drug overdose in 2020 according to preliminary CDC data, a 30% increase from 2019. According to experts, COVID-19 related triggers including economic stress, loneliness and anxiety played major roles in this increase.
The same CDC data shows that most states experienced an increase in opioid-related deaths, including many states where Leidos employees live and work:
- 31% in Alabama
- 43% in California
- 43% in Florida
- 19% in Maryland
- 33% in Texas
- 47% in Virginia
Throughout the pandemic, Leidos has taken action to mitigate the risk of substance misuse and other mental health issues for employees:
- Donated almost $2 million to help more than 600 employees directly impacted by COVID-19 through the Leidos Relief Foundation.
- Offered free support resources to help provide more medical and mental health support access for all employees, including Headspace, LifeMatters Employee Assistance Program and Teladoc health services.
- Raised almost $300,000 through individual and company match donations in support of the CDC’s Crush COVID-19 campaign.
Go deeper: In June, Leidos Chairman & CEO Roger Krone participated in a panel of business executives hosted by the Milken Institute’s Center for Public Health. The discussion highlighted how COVID-19 has compounded issues related to Substance Use Disorder and other mental health effects.
From the source: “We want to protect our most valuable resource, our employees,” Krone said.
Please contact the Leidos media relations team for more.