White House: Opioid epidemic cost about $504B in 2015

The amount was more than six times higher than previous studies, accounting for around 2.8 percent of gross domestic product


By EMS1 Staff

WASHINGTON — According to a recent analysis from the Council of Economic Advisers, the opioid epidemic cost around $504 billion in 2015.

The Hill reported that the estimation is more than six times higher than previous studies and makes up for around 2.8 percent of gross domestic product.

The CEA said they issued the report because “in assessing the benefits of fiscal and regulatory policies that limit opioid abuse in the United States, it is important to understand the costs associated with the epidemic that policies might mitigate.”

The Council added that the number of fatalities due to the epidemic is underestimated, saying the number of deaths in 2015 is around 41,000, as opposed to the reported amount of 33,000.

The CEA said they plan to issue more reports on the epidemic.

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