Health Highlights: July 14, 2021

Here’s some of HealthDay’s top stories for Wednesday, July 14:

U.S. drug overdose deaths jumped nearly 30% during pandemic. As stressors rose and treatment got tougher to get during the pandemic, fatal drug overdoses surged among Americans battling addictions. Experts say more must be done to help those struggling today. Read more

COVID took a tough toll on Americans with diabetes. People with diabetes make up about 10% of U.S. adults, but they made up 40% of those killed so far by COVID-19. The head of the American Diabetes Association says it’s imperative that anyone with diabetes get vaccinated. Read more

Dr. Rahul Gupta nominated as U.S. drug czar. With an epidemic of opioid addiction still raging in the United States, President Biden on Tuesday nominated former West Virginia health commissioner Dr. Rahul Gupta as head of White House Office of National Drug Control Policy. Many experts applauded the move. Read more

‘Ross & Rachel’ romances more common than you think. A study of more than 1,900 people finds that, rather than meeting as strangers, two-thirds of couples started out as friends. Solid friendships might make for stronger romantic relationships, researchers said. Read more

Meth abuse tied to surge in heart failure cases in California. Methamphetamine abuse is notoriously tough on the heart, and new research shows a nearly 600% jump in heart failure cases in California between 2008 and 2018, when the drug ravaged the state. Read more

More breast cancer deaths ahead after pandemic delays in screening. Last year was a tough one for women, with many forced to skip breast cancer screening or treatment due to lockdowns. That could mean thousands of extra deaths from the illness in years to come, researchers predict. Read more