ATLANTA -- The Centers for Disease Control released new estimates for the numbers of overdose deaths experienced nationwide and in each state Thursday.
Nationally, 72,000 people died from overdoses in 2017, and that number is expected the increase by 6.6 percent in 2018.
In Utah, overdose deaths are expected to drop by almost 12 percent, from 751 in 2017 to 662 in 2018.
That decrease is second only to Wyoming where the CDC estimates a 33 percent drop in overdose deaths.
Angela Ito, the opioid prevention coordinator with the Utah Department of Health, says Utah has seen a decrease in the number of prescriptions for opioid painkillers.
"We've done a lot to educate them on safer prescribing," Ito said.
Ito said Utah's education and tracking programs have become national models.