Maryland Health Dept. Reports 8% Increase in Overdose Deaths - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Maryland Health Dept. Reports 8% Increase in Overdose Deaths

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(Photo: AP) (Photo: AP)

SALISBURY, Md. - The Maryland Department of Health on Wednesday released the third quarter Unintentional Drug and Alcohol Related Intoxication Death report, which documented an 8 percent increase in overdose deaths when compared to the same time period from the previous year (January-September 2017).

The Wicomico County Health Department says the county’s overdose numbers remained consistent with the previous year, totaling 30 lives lost to an overdose during the January-September time period.

This overdose report came just five days after the Hogan-Rutherford Administration announced that the state would be awarding Wicomico County with $972,684 to repurpose the Poplar Hill Facility in Wicomico County for substance use disorder treatment and recovery on the Eastern Shore. The facility will include 23-hour observation and detoxification services, residential treatment, and recovery housing, as well as an employment service -- helping those in the recovery housing program successfully reintegrate back into the community and gain employment.

“Although Wicomico County did not see a decrease in overdose deaths during this time period, we remain hopeful that with continued prevention efforts, increased treatment options and strong recovery resources in our community, these numbers will, in time, begin to decrease and lives will be saved” said Christina Bowie-Simpson, opioid coordinator for Wicomico County.

The department says naloxone training continues to be a priority for the county with the hope that lives will be saved by utilization of this opioid-overdose reversal medication. Naloxone trainings are held every second Tuesday of the month at the Wicomico Public Library Lower Level Meeting Rooms from 6-7 p.m.

If you or someone you love is struggling with a substance use disorder, you can find help at BeforeItsTooLateMD.org or by calling 211 and pressing 1. You can also contact the Community Outreach Addiction Team (COAT) at 443-783-6875.

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