The opioid crisis is killing thousands of Americans every day, but its impact on the economy is far-reaching and far-ranging.
In a nutshell, the opioid epidemic has forced millions of Americans into debt, forced them to make sacrifices to help others, and forced many of them to live in poverty.
Here are five key takeaways from this week’s Federal Reserve Bank of New York data.1.
Incomes are falling because of opioid painkillers and fentanyl1.
Opioid painkillers have killed more Americans than any other drug in history.
From January through June, more than 8,800 Americans died of opioid-related overdose.
This was more than double the number of deaths from cocaine or heroin combined.2.
The death toll from the opioid problem has been climbing.
During the same period, opioid painkiller overdoses killed more people than car crashes, according to the CDC.3.
This epidemic is also spreading through the social safety net.
Over the last several years, more Americans are being forced to repay their student loans.
According to the Center for Responsible Lending, borrowers are being pressured to repay at a rate of more than 25 percent, a rate far above the national average.4.
It’s not just people who have been impacted.
For every one opioid overdose death, more people are dying of other illnesses, including heart disease, diabetes, and cancer.5.
As a result of the crisis, the U.S. has seen its population shrink by about 25 percent since 2013.
Over 10 million Americans were added to the national unemployment rolls since the year 2000.
But this is not only a loss of jobs.
It is also a loss in quality of life.
According the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median American family lost about $17,000 in income last year, with the average loss being $30,000.