BINGHAMTON (WBNG) -- New numbers suggest there are fewer overdose deaths in Broome County so far in 2018 than in previous years.
The statistics released by the Broome County District Attorney’s Office indicate there were 22 drug overdose deaths from January 1 through September 30.
This is a decrease from the same period in 2017, where there were 55 deaths, and in 2016, where there were 60 deaths.
“In February of 2016, when we launched Operation SAFE, to pair drug users with treatment programs, addition was largely viewed as a criminal offense – now, our community more accurately views addiction as a public health issue, which requires treatment, not jail,” said Broome County District Attorney Steve Cornwell in a press release. “Through more treatment programs and resources devoted to addiction, Broome County is saving more and more lives.”
There were nine overdose deaths in the third quarter of 2018, the district attorney’s office notes, with all of them attributed to heroin and opioids. Four of the deaths were in Binghamton, two in the town of Maine, and one death each in Kirkwood, Union, and Whitney Point.