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New York overdose deaths reach all-time high

Sep 01, 2023 12:55 pm

Kate Lisa reports for New York State of Politics that New York overdose deaths have reached an all-time high, and most of the deaths are related to fentanyl. In 2022 more than 6,300 New Yorkers died by overdose, up from more than 5,800 the year before, according to the state Office of Addiction Services and Supports and the state Comptroller's Office. Office of Addiction Services and Supports Commissioner Dr. Chinazo Cunningham said, "We are at the worst point ever on record in terms of the number of overdose deaths that are happening in New York and the United States.... Our provisional numbers from 2022 show that over 6,300 people overdosed and died, so that's about one person every 90 minutes who's dying of an overdose in New York." Senate Health Committee Chair Gustavo Rivera said, "Some people still have baked in their brains that addiction is a moral failing, and not the public health crisis that it is, not the disease that it is." New York is getting more than $2 billion in settlement agreements from opioid manufacturers to help slow the death rate. The state is working on harm reduction services and education to end the stigma around addiction and improve available medical treatment. Cunningham said, "We should be talking about addiction like we talk about diabetes or heart disease.... Addiction is a medical problem. It's a medical condition where when people have addiction, their brain gets rewired and it really requires medical treatment and a public health approach. And so I think we just have to keep that in mind." Read more about this story at New York State of Politics.

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