The Maryland Department of Health and Opioid Operational Command Center (OOCC) has released its 2019 second quarter report, which shows that Maryland has experienced its first six-month decline in the total number of opioid-related fatalities in at least a decade. Release of the report comes during National Recovery Month, a time to raise awareness of substance use disorders and the resources available to end addiction. In the first two quarters of 2019, there were 1,182 total unintentional intoxication deaths in the state, an 11.3% decrease as compared to the same period in 2018. Of that total, 89.7% (1,060) were opioid-related deaths, primarily attributable to fentanyl. Opioid-related deaths declined by 11.1%. In addition, heroin-related deaths continued to decline, decreasing 14.9% through June 2019 compared with the same period in 2018. Prescription opioid-related deaths declined by 3.5% in the first six months of 2019 compared to the same period in 2018. “Though the continued decline in fatal overdoses is welcome news, the heroin and opioid epidemic remains a crisis and we will continue to respond with all the tools at our disposal,” said Governor Larry Hogan. “The fight against heroin and opioid overdoses has torn apart communities and families throughout our state […]
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