NYC OVERDOSE DEATHS: 2019

A fatal overdose occurs every 6 hours in NYC

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Tragically, fatal drug overdoses are at an all-time high in New York City with :

over

1,400
deaths

per year

approximately

4
deaths

per day

The opioid epidemic came in three waves.

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Overprescribing of prescription opioids

False advertising by pharmaceutical companies and overprescribing by doctors fueled a crisis of addiction to opioid painkillers nationwide beginning in the 1990s. Drug rings developed methods of obtaining fraudulent prescriptions. Unscrupulous medical practitioners got rich selling prescriptions for opioids in exchange for cash while overdose deaths climbed. Read More

 

Heroin production ramps up

New York City serves as a major hub of heroin trafficking for the Northeast. Local distribution networks coordinate with drug cartels in Mexico to transport multi-million-dollar shipments of heroin to the area. The cartels seized upon the crisis of opioid painkiller addiction in the U.S. as an opportunity to ramp up production of heroin, creating a multi-billion-dollar industry and further escalating overdose deaths beginning in approximately 2010.

 
 

Influx of synthetic opioids

50X stronger than Heroin

A highly potent synthetic opioid, illicitly produced fentanyl is approximately 50 times stronger than heroin and 100 times stronger than morphine. It is sold interchangeably with heroin, mixed with other drugs like cocaine and methamphetamine, and pressed into counterfeit pills.

 

Fentanyl has flooded the black market for narcotics since 2015, causing drug deaths to skyrocket.

Fentanyl is present in more than half of all overdose deaths in NYC. Because it is cheaper to produce than heroin, fentanyl boosts profits for drug cartels in Mexico. Multi-kilogram shipments follow the same overland transportation routes as heroin, travelling across the Southwest border with Mexico in vehicles.

COVID-19 and the Opioid Epidemic

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Overdose death rates have surged across the U.S. during the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, due in part to increased isolation, economic worries and difficulty obtaining treatment. Laboratory testing by DEA and the NYPD show lethal synthetic opioids, such as fentanyl, continue to permeate the drug supply in New York City.
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New York City drug networks are buying and selling narcotics at inflated prices due to a shortage in supply stemming from travel restrictions. The deadly nature of their products are reflected in brand names such as "coronavirus," "anthrax" and black mamba."
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During the pandemic, the Special Narcotics Prosecutor's Office and its partners continue to investigate and prosecute members of trafficking organizations that smuggle narcotics into New York City, as well as those involved in large-scale packaging operations and distribution groups.
 

FENTANYL KILLS MORE NEW YORKERS THAN GUNS.

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FENTANYL KILLS MORE NEW YORKERS THAN GUNS.

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Need Help?

Resources to prevent overdoses are available to all New Yorkers, including those with substance use disorder and those who want to help.
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NYC Well

Speak to a counselor via phone, text, or chat and get access to mental health and substance use services, in more than 200 languages, 24/7/365.

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Naloxone

In response to the crisis, the opioid overdose reversal medication naloxone is widely available in New York City.

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For more information about the opioid crisis in New York State and nationwide, visit:
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OASAS

Office of Addiction Services and Supports. Harm Reduction and Overdose Prevention.
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Center for Disease Control and Prevention

Learn what can be done about overdose and related harms.

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National Coalition Against Prescription Drug Abuse

NCAPDA's mission is to prevent prescription drug abuse related addiction and overdose deaths.
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Physicians for Responsible Opioid Prescribing

Learn what can be done about overdose and related harms.

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