Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Westmoreland County Coroner Reports Record Overdoses in 2017

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Westmoreland County Coroner Reports Record Overdoses in 2017

Article excerpt

Westmoreland County has been inundated by the same opioid drug crisis affecting Western Pennsylvania and the rest of the country, according to a report released Wednesday by the county coroner's office.

In the 2017 annual report, county Coroner Kenneth A. Bacha said his office received a record number of cases related to accidental fatal drug overdoses, with most of them caused by fetanyl and heroin or combinations involving the two.

While heroin overdoses actually decreased since 2016, the report said fatal overdoses involving fentanyl increased 38 percent since 2016 and 463 percent since 2015.

In the most recent report, 141 of the 193 fatal overdoses investigated by the coroner's office in 2017 involved fentanyl.

Overall, the office said accidental drug overdoses have increased 777 percent since 2002. …

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