Maine Overdose Numbers Are Terrifying
If you have lived in Maine and paid attention at all you are aware that Maine has a problem with overdose deaths, and with the pandemic things have only gotten worse.
It has been an ongoing issue and one the Maine and Mainers have been working to address for years. But over the last year while the COVID-19 pandemic has taken over the focus the overdose death and the opioid crisis in general in Maine has still been a big and apparently growing issue.
Maine's overdose death were growing yearly and in 2016 that number has jumped up and stayed up. You can check out this chart from the Margaret Chase Smith Policy Center; but basically, one Mainers dies each DAY due to an overdose, be illegal or prescription drugs.
So, prior to COVID Maine’s numbers had been about one death a day in Maine. In 2020 the death total was 503. January of 2021, Maine saw 55 lives lost to overdose deaths and 45 in February according to numbers reported on WABI. Do that math. That is 100 people in two months. At that rate, we are looking at 600 deaths this year.
There is a list of reasons that got us here with the issues of drug use, but you do not need to be any sort of medical professional to see the increase for 2020 and what is happening so far in 2021 are not good and I am willing to bet that with increased pressure of a scary pandemic, the isolation of stay at home orders, no in-person support services, and the changes in how medical services were handled in the pandemic did nothing to help.