FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) – Drug overdose deaths in Kentucky are increasing despite a drop in opioid prescriptions and heroin use.
A new report from the Kentucky Office of Drug Control Policy says 1,565 people died from drug overdoses in 2017. That’s an 11.5 percent increase from 2016. Kentucky overdose deaths have increased by more than 40 percent since 2013.
Opioids are the main culprit in most deaths. Deaths attributed to heroin have declined. But more than half of the overdose deaths in 2017 were caused by fentanyl, a synthetic opioid.
Every year, Kentucky lawmakers have been passing more laws designed to address the epidemic. Anti-drug advocates celebrate those changes, but their celebration is tempered once a year when the new numbers come out detailing how many more have died.
Nationally, opioids accounted for more than 42,000 deaths in 2016.
…One could theorize that the passage of HB50 which included a provision to “provide funding for the purchase and administration of naltrexone for extended-release injectable suspension”, for Heroin overdoses was a calculated response to what they knew was going to happen when they discontinued “narcotics” at the Doctor’s office…more Heroin deaths. Per the Interim Joint Committee on Judiciary on July 27, 2015… LINK