Today the Berrien County Prosecutor's Office announced that in the last two weeks the prosecutor’s office has received reports of an extraordinary number of overdose deaths and overdose recoveries in a short period.
Though not yet confirmed by autopsy reports, death scenes would suggest that these deaths have been throughout the county. In addition, it is reported there have been more than a usual number of treatments at emergency rooms as well.
Preliminarily, it appears the spike in these occurrences may be related to mixtures containing a higher than usual percentage of fentanyl, an opiate now used by drug dealers because the synthetic version of this product is less expensive than heroin itself.
Prior to this, the statistics for heroin based overdose deaths had been relatively static over the years beingin the thirty-some deaths per year range over the last several years with a slight downward trend lastyear, according to the prosecutor's office. That trend was possibly due to the prevalence of Naloxone (Narcan), the antidote for an overdose used by police officers, medic crews, and many others.
Officials warn anyone who uses opiates, needs to be aware that the source of their supply could be part of this recent deadly mixture. The Berrien County Prosecutor is providing the following information about resources available:
Berrien County Health Department at 269 927 5668 Carol’s Hope at 269 556 1526.Crime Stoppers at 574-288-STOP or 800-342-STOPBerrien County Sheriff’s Department tip line at:http://www.bcsheriff.org/FormCenter/Sheriffs-Department-7/Tip-Form-48 .
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