AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — Officials say Maine saw a 31 percent increase in drug overdose deaths in 2015 that was fueled by heroin and fentanyl. In addition, 272 people died from overdoses last year, setting another record following 208 overdose deaths the year before. Most of the overdose deaths, 157, were from heroin and non-pharmaceutical fentanyl; the other 111 overdose deaths were as a result of prescription opioids.
Attorney General Janet T. Mills called the figures “shocking” and noted that five people died each week from overdoses during the calendar year in Maine.
Further Reading: The U.S. Attorney for Maine, the Maine Attorney General, and the Maine Commissioner of Public Safety (known collectively as the Maine Opiate Collaborative) created three task forces to study various aspects of the opioid addiction problem. On May 6, 2016 they issued their reports and key recommendations: