NH Opioid Crisis Is Worse Than We Thought and Growing
The most recent data released by the state of New Hampshire medical examiner's office indicates drug overdose deaths have increased for the fifth year in a row.
Previous reports showed that the overdose deaths likely would level off in 2017 with the same number of deaths — 485 — as 2016.
The report release Friday shows that there have been 483 confirmed drug overdose deaths for 2017. Six cases from last year are still “pending toxicology." If all turn out to be drug related, that will put the number of deaths at 489, four deaths higher than 2016.
The increase is small compared to the spikes between 2013 and 2014 and 2014 and 2015. Both of those year-to-year numbers increased by more than 100 overdose deaths.
The state had projected the overdose death number to decline for 2017. In December, the data had pointed at 466 overdose deaths for 2017. The graphic below was released by the Medical Examiner's office on Dec. 7, 2017.
So far in 2018, the state has 40 confirmed overdose deaths. There are 86 toxicology reports pending so far for the year.
April turned out to be deadliest overdose month in 2017 with more than 50 deaths.
May was the deadliest overdose month in 2016. The numbers for 2016 weren't finalized until September of 2017.