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Baltimore overdoses up; official urges long-term treatment

Posted at 10:09 PM, Dec 29, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-30 08:07:31-05

Baltimore's health commissioner is calling for making long-term treatment for drug addiction available for more patients after a state report shows that overdoses in the city have gone up significantly.

Maryland's Department of Health and Mental Hygiene released a report Thursday showing that there were 481 fatal overdoses in Baltimore from January through September. There were 286 fatal overdoes during the same period last year.

Baltimore Health Commissioner Dr. Leana Wen said in a statement that officials have improved access to naloxone, an opioid overdose antidote.

But she pointed out that only one in 10 patients nationwide gets access to long-term treatment.

Wen says until patients can get the care that they need, health officials are only treading water in the fight against the overdose epidemic.

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