Opioids Claim Record Deaths In 2018

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NEW JERSEY – Deaths from suspected opioid overdoses have exceeded a record high, according to statistics compiled by state agencies.

There were a suspected 3,163 opioid-related deaths in the state last year, up from a preliminary count of 2,750 in 2017 and a confirmed count of 2,221 in 2016.

Opioids include heroin, cocaine, fentanyl + analogs, morphine, oxycodone and methadone.

The counts are provided by the Office of the State Medical Examiner.

In Ocean County, there were a suspected 217 deaths from opioids last year; naloxone was administered 661 times. In Monmouth County, there were 223 in 2018; naloxone was administered 785 times. Those numbers may rise or fall based on more information as it becomes available.

The death toll has risen every year in Monmouth County, from 85 in 2013 to 171 in 2017. Ocean County saw 154 deaths in 2013, with a dip to 132 in 2014, and a rise again each year after to 191 deaths in 2017.

The state compiles and updates information on the opioid crisis at NJ Cares.