WASHINGTON – Opioids are responsible for 86 percent of Maryland’s overdose deaths, and the numbers keep rising, even as states scramble to curtail them.
Those tracking heroin, fentanyl and opioid prescription deaths — both statewide and nationally — are reporting staggering numbers.
In 2014, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said overdose deaths related to opioids are up 14 percent from the year before.
“The most commonly prescribed opioid pain relievers, those classified as natural or semi-synthetic opioids such as oxycodone and hydrocodone, continue to be involved in more overdose deaths than any other opioid type. These deaths increased by 9 percent (813 more deaths in 2014 than 2013),” the federal agency says in a news release.
Both Maryland and Virginia are working to change their numbers, but both also report more deaths from opioids last year than in 2013.