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The trend mirrors a statewide decrease in overdose deaths, with improved access to Suboxone and naloxone.
By: Joe Lawlor
Admissions to emergency departments at Maine hospitals for drug overdoses have gradually declined since 2017, according to statistics released recently by the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
Suspected drug overdose admissions in the first six months of 2019 declined 11 percent over the same period in 2018, dropping from 2,047 last January through June to 1,847 in the first half of this year. The trend began in 2018 when admissions declined 7 percent for the calendar year compared with 2017, from 4,355 to 4,068.
The decline mirrors the slight decrease in drug overdose deaths across Maine during the same time period, with a 14 percent decline in the first quarter of 2019 – the latest data available, going from 86 deaths in the first quarter of 2018 to 74 deaths through March 31 of this year. After several years of increases, drug overdose deaths declined from 417 in 2017 to 354 in 2018.