From OxyContin coupons to fentanyl-laced heroin – this is how the crisis unfolded.
The scale of the overdose epidemic is hard to fathom.
In 2016 overdoses claimed 64,000 lives—more than the US military casualties in Vietnam and Iraq combined.
The origins of today’s crisis – a perfect storm of potent easily accessible opioids – trace back to aggressive pharmaceutical marketing and liberal painkiller prescribing in the 1990s and 2000s.
Here’s how it happened: