State report: Fentanyl involved in 89 percent of opioid overdose deaths

Massachusetts

Governor Charlie Baker is planning to take action to stem the flow of fentanyl into Massachusetts and across New England.

The state report on opioid overdoses showed fentanyl was found in 89 percent of opioid-related overdose deaths, a 40 percent increase since 2014.

Since then, the heroin content involved in overdose deaths has  been decreasing, while fentanyl and cocaine content have been trending higher.

In a statement, Baker said that “Fentanyl… is becoming… the major player in almost all the overdose deaths that we’re dealing with here in Massachusetts, and not just here but in other places as well.”

He went on to say that the state is working collaboratively with Rhode Island, Connecticut, and New Hampshire because fentanyl has no state boundaries.

On August 9, Gov. Baker signed a new law to expand addiction-prevention measures and access to treatment.

Baker said the federal government, along with state police and local law enforcement, have “dramatically” upped their games with regard to arrests associated with fentanyl, while also stressing more work needs to be done.

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