MA State Police Report 185 Heroin Overdose Deaths Since Nov.
Wednesday, February 26, 2014
That figure, compiled by the State Police homicide units (SPDU), includes 12 overdose deaths from Worcester County, but does not include the state's largest cities (Boston, Worcester, Springfield). Death investigations in those cities are handled by local authorities.
Bristol and Middlesex Counties have experienced the highest overdose death tolls in that period, with 34 and 30 fatalities respectively.
No comparable data
The State Police only began tracking these cases in November of 2013, so there is no data available for comparison. However, David Procopio, Massachusetts State Police's Director of Media Relations released a written statement where he pointed out that these numbers show an absolute increase in fatal heroin overdoses.
Procopio's statement also pointed to several potential contributing factors to the increase:
- The arrival of a very potent strain of heroin to the region.
- The addition of a synthetic substance, such as the extremely potent Fentanyl, to increase toxicity.
- The use of heroin simultaneous with other drugs.
- The availability and accessibility of heroin.
Related Slideshow: New England States with Highest Marijuana Arrest Rates
- Heroin ODs Up 47 Percent in Worcester
- Heroin Use in Worcester: Top Stories in Central Mass in 2012
- NEW: Worcester Group Wants First Responders to Treat Heroin ODs
- Worcester Heroin Use Twice National Average
- HIV + Drug Overdose Linked in RI Hospital Study
- Massachusetts Drug Overdose Deaths Up 47% Since 1999
- Addicts Treat Own ODs in Controversial Drug Program
- Drugs Main Cause Behind Worcester’s 23 Shootings Per Year