Overdose Deaths Continue to Increase in The Bronx Despite Overall Drop in New York City

For the first time in 7 years, overdose death rates in New York City have dropped.

According to New York City Department of Health, NYC saw a 3% drop in such deaths in 2018 compared to 2017 however, The Bronx continues to see a rise in overdoses.

In 2018, our borough saw an increase of 9% leading the city in overdose deaths with 391 fatalities last year making it not just the borough with the highest rate of overdose death in New York City but also the borough to record the most deaths as a result of overdoses.

6 of 7 Bronx neighborhoods are in the top 15 in New York City with the highest rates of overdose deaths in the city.

During that period there were 1,444 overdose related deaths recorded in New York City, a drop of 38 deaths from 2017.

The Crotona – Tremont area of The Bronx, comprised of the 10453, 10457, and 10460 zip codes) saw the highest rate of overdose deaths in the borough and placed second in New York City with a rate of 49.5 deaths per 100,000 residents more than twice the average of 20.5 deaths per 100,000 for the entire city.

Only East Harlem in Manhattan was worse with a rate of 56.1 deaths per 100,000 placing the area on the top of the list.

Of the top 15 of the 42 neighborhoods in New York City in the report, six are in The Bronx making the borough by far the center of the opioid crisis in the country’s largest city.

The Bronx neighborhoods with the highest rates of overdoses, in order, are:

Bronx RankOverall NYC RankNeighboroodZip CodesRate per 100,000 residents
12Crotona-Tremont10453, 10457, 1046049.5
23Hunts Point-Mott Haven-Melrose10454, 10455, 10459, 1047449.2
34Fordham-Bronx Park10458, 10467, 1046840.5
48Highbridge-Morrisania10451, 10452, 1045633.5
510Pelham-Throggs Neck10461, 10462, 10464, 10465, 10472, 1047327.0
614Northeast Bronx10466, 10469, 10470, 1047521.2

According to the report, fentanyl accounted for 60% of the opioid related deaths and cocaine was involved in 52% of such cases.

Other key statistics from the data showed that Latinos had the highest rate of overdose death at 24.8 per 100,000 residents; a 5% increase from 2017.

Overdoses are also increasing in females which saw an increase overdoses in 2018 of 7% compared to the previous years.

Also, unsurprisingly, neighborhoods with very high levels of poverty had a much higher rate than areas of high, medium, and low poverty.

The crisis is far from over in The Bronx and we must continue to pressure our elected officials to provide more resources to battle this scourge that is destroying the fabric of our communities.

You can view the full report here.

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Ed García Conde

Ed García Conde is a life-long Bronxite who spends his time documenting the people, places, and things that make the borough a special place in the hopes of dispelling the negative stereotypes associated with The Bronx. His writings are often cited by mainstream media and is often consulted for his expertise on the borough's rich history.