Drug overdoses killed twice as many people in San Francisco last year than COVID, with 2021 on track to be worse


San Francisco, California, is in the midst of a drug overdose epidemic that killed more residents last year than the coronavirus and is on pace to be even worse in 2021.
More than 700 San Franciscans died from drug overdoses last year, compared to 300 deaths as a result of coronavirus infections, the San Francisco Chronicle reported Saturday.
Chief medical examiner data shows that overdose fatalities in San Francisco started skyrocketing in 2019, which is the same time that large amounts of fentanyl, a synthetic opioid 50 to 100 times more potent than morphine, were unleashed on the streets.
“We anticipated mortality to go up because that is exactly what’s happened everywhere that fentanyl has settled into,” Dr. Phillip Coffin, director of substance abuse research for the Department of Public Health, said about the rapid increase.
Coffin added that there is no quick solution to the problem and that “fentanyl is here for good.”