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Rutherford Cautions Celebrating Drop in Overdose Deaths with Work Still to Do

July 18th, 2019 by WCBC Radio

U.S. overdose deaths last year likely fell for the first time in nearly three decades, preliminary statistics suggest. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Wednesday posted the provisional numbers showing nearly 68,000 drug overdose deaths were reported last year. The number may go up as more investigations are completed, but the agency expects the tally will end up below 69,000. Overdose deaths had been climbing each year since 1990, topping 70,000 in 2017.  Lt Governor Boyd Rutherford, who has headed up Maryland’s opioid task force, tells WCBC News that while any leveling off or decline in overdose deaths is good news,  the overdose death rate is still about seven times higher than it was a generation ago.

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