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UPDATED 2016 DATA REVEALS THAT HEROIN AND OPIOID EPIDEMIC IN BERGEN COUNTY WAS MORE SEVERE THAN SUGGESTED BY INITIAL REPORTING

TO:                 ALL NEWS MEDIA

FROM:           PROSECUTOR GURBIR S. GREWAL

DATE:            JULY 19, 2017

Bergen County Prosecutor Gurbir S. Grewal today released an updated report on the effect that the heroin and opioid crisis had on Bergen County in 2016, revising upward the total number of overdoses and fatalities that occurred last year.  In addition, the year-to-date 2017 statistics that have been released through the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office (“BCPO”) #StopTheODs campaign have also been revised upward.  These revisions are based on new data received from the Bergen County Medical Examiner’s Office and improved reporting methods that were recently implemented.  A copy of the updated 2016 report can be downloaded at https://www.bcpo.net/images/pdf/2016-Report-on-Heroin-Epidemic.pdf, and the year-to-date statistics have been revised on the BCPO’s social media platforms.  The key revisions are summarized below.

As detailed in the revised 2016 report, there were 320 drug overdoses in Bergen County in 2016, 98 of which were fatal.  This represents an 11.1% increase from 2015 with respect to overdoses, during which 288 were reported.  With respect to overdose fatalities, the revised data reflect a 12.6% increase from 2015, during which there were 87 overdose fatalities reported.  As in 2015, however, the majority of overdoses and overdose fatalities in 2016 were heroin and opioid related. 

 “While we always anticipated updating our initial reporting because toxicology results can sometimes take months to receive, it is alarming that the number of overdoses between 2015 and 2016 rose at the rate they did,” stated Prosecutor Gurbir S. Grewal. “What the updated numbers underscore, however, is that a collaborative effort comprised of innovative criminal enforcement, treatment options for those suffering from the disease of addiction, and educational programming to deter substance abuse is required to combat the heroin and opioid epidemic in Bergen County.  We look forward to working with stakeholders across the County in this effort.”

 As a result of additional data from the Bergen County Medical Examiner’s Office and improved reporting, the following numbers have changed for last year:      

2016 Statistics

Originally reported #

Updated #

Reported Overdoses

308

320

Overdose Fatalities

87

98

Opioid Related Overdoses

246

259

Narcan Deployments by Police

207

208

Narcan Saves

180

180

 The year-to-date statistics for 2017 have been updated as follows:   

2017 Statistics

Updated #

Reported Overdoses

244

Overdose Fatalities

57

Opioid Related Overdoses

206

Narcan Deployments by Police

165

Narcan Saves

132

 

 

 

 

 

The BCPO continues to share current overdose and Narcan Save data, as well as maps demonstrating the reach of the epidemic in the County, using social media.  The public is encouraged to follow the BCPO’s efforts on Twitter (@BCPONJ) and Facebook (fb.com/bcponj).  The BCPO also asks the public to share their own experiences and suggestions concerning this issue by using the hashtag #StopTheODs.

 

         

 

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