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Fatal fentanyl overdoses increase 12 percent in Connecticut

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 23: Bags of heroin, some laced with fentanyl, are displayed before a press conference regarding a major drug bust, at the office of the New York Attorney General, September 23, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

FARMINGTON — Connecticut’s chief medical examiner says the startling increase in fatal fentanyl-related overdoses continued in the state during 2018, while total accidental overdose deaths decreased slightly.

Dr. James Gill released last year’s accidental overdose data Friday. He says 760 people died from overdoses of the powerful opioid fentanyl, up 12 percent from 2017 and four times higher than in 2015.

Total accidental overdose deaths in Connecticut dipped to 1,017 in 2018 from 1,038 the year before. Fentanyl deaths comprised 75 percent of all overdose fatalities, up from 65 percent in 2017.
Gill noted heroin overdose deaths continue to decrease, dropping 18 percent to 391 last year compared with 2017.

Cocaine-related deaths decreased to 345 last year from 347 the year before, but were still nearly triple the total in 2012.

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