Mental Health and Substance Use Data

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Fatal Overdose Data


MCDPH tracks fatal overdoses using two data sources. The fatal overdose charts below rely on these two data sources, which are indicated in each chart: 

  1. Vital statistics data using death certificates for Maricopa County residents. 
  2. Deaths in Maricopa County which are potentially due to unnatural causes are investigated by the Maricopa County Office of the Medical Examiner (OME) and postmortem examinations and laboratory testing is performed. MCDPH uses OME toxicology data for monitoring drug-related deaths that occurred within Maricopa County.

Please note that that any fatal overdose statistics using 2022 toxicology data from the OME are still provisional. Data are subject to change once finalized.

death rates overall chart

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July is typically the hottest month in Maricopa County. Because stimulants such as cocaine and methamphetamines can induce hyperthermia (i.e., overheating), we have been seeing an increase in fatal overdoses during the month of July. 

July 2020-22 increases overdose deathsView data table
    


Overdose Data by Demographics

Demographics show differences in who experiences fatal drug overdoses.

death rates by race chart

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death rates over 35 years

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death rates by sex line chart

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Overdose Data by Substance

We can also examine the data by looking more closely at the substances involved. 

overdose bar chart involving multiple drugs

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While total overdoses are increasing, opioids are involved in a majority of fatal drug overdoses. 

overdose deaths opioids chart

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death rate for synthetic opioids chart

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Natural/semi-synthetic opioids include drugs such as:

  • Morphine
  • Codeine
  • Oxycodone
  • Hydrocodone
  • Hydromorphone
  • Oxymorphone

Synthetic opioids include drugs such as:

  • Tramadol
  • Fentanyl

fentanyl presence in overdose deaths has increased

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Commonly-prescribed opioids would include:

  • Hydrocodone (Vicodin®)
  • Oxycodone (OxyContin®, Percocet®)
  • Oxymorphone (Opana®)
  • Morphine (Kadian®, Avinza®)
  • Codeine
  • Fentanyl
  • Hydromorphone
  • Tapentadol

overdose deaths involving meth increase line chart

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Suicide Data


Suicide death data are compiled using death certificate data for Maricopa County residents. Deaths due to suicide are identified using International Classification of Diseases, 10th Revision underlying cause-of-death codes U03, X60–X84, and Y87.0.

All rates are presented per 100,000 residents using population data from the American Community Survey 5-year estimates.

line with markers chart showing change in suicide rates over last ten years in Maricopa County

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The suicide death rate in Maricopa County, AZ tends to be slightly higher than the national suicide death rate. While the chart below presents crude rates, the age-adjusted suicide death rate in 2022 for Maricopa County was 17.0, while the provisional age-adjusted national suicide death rate was 14.3 per 100,000 individuals1.

  1. https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/vsrr/vsrr034.pdf

Suicide Death Data by Demographics

line chart showing suicide death rate for males compared to females over past five years

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Age-specific suicide death rates fluctuate year-to-year. 2022 suicide death rates were highest among those ages 45-64, followed closely by those 65+.

multiple line charts by age group showing which age group had largest increase of suicide death rate

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Suicide deaths among non-Hispanic Whites skew older than for non-Whites. The median age for non-Hispanic Whites who died by suicide was 54. In comparison, the median age for American Indian or Alaskan Native decedents was 30.5, for Black or African American decedents it was 29, for Hispanic or Latino decedents it was 34, and for Asian or Pacific Islander decedents it was 46.5.

line chart showing change in suicide death rates by race from 2017 to 2021

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clustered column graphic showing suicide death rates by race and age groups

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Suicide Death Data by Mechanism

Firearms were used in most suicide deaths between 2018-2022. However, the mechanism of suicide death can vary by population demographic. Youth suicides, for example, have a higher proportion of deaths by hanging compared to adults. And although firearms are the most common suicide mechanism for both men and women, poisonings are more common among women.

100% stacked column chart Mechanism of suicide death by age categoryView data table

clustered bar chart depicting Three out of five suicide deaths involved firearms/explosives 2017-21

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Suicide Death Data by Veteran Status

line chart showing suicide death rates of veterans double that of non-veterans

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Nonfatal Overdose Report


In March 2021, MCDPH began case investigations of suspected nonfatal opioid overdoses reported by Maricopa County hospital facilities.  Staff attempt telephone interviews with a sample of case-patients to better interpret the findings and to specifically help inform overdose prevention interventions for people who use drugs.

Among approximately 300 case-patients interviewed during the period from 9/1/21through 8/31/22, more than 55% (179 individuals) self-reported recreational drug use. View report findings.