Maryland, Pennsylvania and West Virginia all rank in top 6 for drug overdose death rates


As drug overdose mortality rates rise, three states in this area rank with some of the highest. 

Maryland has the 6th highest death rate in the country from drug overdoses, with an average of 33 deaths per every 100,000 residents.

With 37.9 deaths for every hundred thousand residents, Pennsylvania ranks the 4th highest.

In West Virginia, the death tolls at 52 people for every 100,000 residents, making it the number one state in the U.S. for people dying from drug overdoses.

Those overcoming drug addictions are encouraged to seek help from local programs and recovery centers because it could save them from potentially losing their life to an overdose.  

Lasting Change Addiction Treatment Center in Hagerstown is also a resource women can go to, to seek help with fighting addiction. 

Rachel Reines is a graduate from Lasting Change who experienced addiction firsthand. 

“I had been in active addiction for ten years and it had taken absolutely everything from me,” Reines said.

The possibility of death and seeing people pass away from drug addiction, lead her to seek help at Lasting Change.

“The only thing that keeps me clean is the fear that I could kill myself accidentally. I push through and the next day is always a better day because I didn’t get high,” she added. 

In West Virginia, the Berkeley County Recovery Center is growing their programs in place in efforts to decrease the amount of drug use in the area by working with those dealing with addiction and recovery. 

Stephanie Stout is a peer recovery coach and trainer at the recovery resource center.

It is her passion to help here because she can relate to the journey those people are going through. 

“I went through a lot of different things in the past ten years of making mistakes, going to prison, having to come home and rebuild my life all over again,” Stout said. 

Stout uses her experience to give advice to those that come into their office with the work she does every day. 

“Whenever I help someone who comes in the office, for me to tell them I have been there and I have walked that road before and this is what I have done to get out of it,” she said. 

Unfortunately for others, it is too late to seek help. 

Death rates caused by drug overdoses have gone up over 10 percent in the last year nationwide. 

Kevin Knowles, Berkeley County Recovery Services Coordinator, said “There are brothers and sisters and aunts and uncles and mothers and fathers who are passing away to this horrendous disease.”

Knowles said he has seen many people in his community that he has gotten to know, very good people, who have been victims to drug overdose deaths. 

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