A Disturbing Trend: Cocaine-Related Overdose Deaths

by MCF Director of Public Policy Ann Geddes

The Department of Health recently released preliminary data for unintentional overdose deaths for the period January through September 2018. During this time there were 1,848 unintentional overdose deaths – an eight percent increase over the same period in 2017.

While the number of heroin-related deaths and prescription opioid-related deaths declined, there was a troubling increase in cocaine-related deaths. Cocaine was the second most prevalent drug among overdose deaths (fentanyl was the first) – showing an increase of 41% over last year. The increase in cocaine-related deaths can be attributed to cocaine being laced with fentanyl.

No one should be under the illusion that cocaine is a safe drug; all the more so since it is now being combined with fentanyl.

Families concerned about a loved one with a substance use problem can find help at BeforeItsTooLateMD.org. In addition, MCF’s Substance Use Family Peer Support Specialists can provide help. Contact MCF at 410-730-8267 or [email protected].