Center for Disease Control Director Robert Redfield says suicides and drug overdoses have surpassed the death rate for COVID-19 among young people in America.
Redfield said lockdowns and lack of public schooling negatively impacts mental health among young people.
"We're seeing, sadly, far greater suicides now than we are deaths from COVID," Redfield testified in a Buck Institute Webinar. "We're seeing far greater deaths from drug overdose that are above excess that we had as background than we are seeing the deaths from COVID."
About 146,000 people have died from COVID or COVID-related causes, according to CDC data.
Federal data recorded 48,000 deaths from suicide and at least 71,000 deaths from drug overdoses in 2018.
The Chicago Sun-Times reviewed specifically black populations. In Cook County, Illinois, the number of suicide deaths among Black people is already higher than for all of 2019.
According to the American Medical Association, there has been a 40% increase in suicides and drug overdoses in Colorado in 2020. The number of calls to suicide hotlines have increased 48 percent.
Between March 15 and April 29, as many people committed suicide in Queens, New York than did between January 1 and April 29 the year prior.
Hopelessness and despair amid job uncertainty and the ongoing lockdowns have impacted mental health among children, teenagers and young adults in this country.
The CDC has pushed for children to return to schools and adults to return to work as the deaths from COVID-19 have reached a new low.
Just 300+ people died from COVID in the U.S. last week, according to the CDC.
Redfield said he's "absolutely comfortable" with his grandchildren returning to school in the fall.
40 million jobs have been lost to the economic shutdown caused by the pandemic, compared to 2.6 million jobs lost in all of 2008 when the SARS/H1N1 virus arrived in the U.S.