HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Connecticut officials announced drug overdose deaths in the state increased by nearly 20% last year.

Exactly 1,200 people died of some sort of drug overdose in 2019, an increase mostly attributed to the continued rise in fentanyl use, the Hartford Courant reported Friday.

“Fentanyl is still increasing," Chief State Medical Examiner Robert Gill said Friday. “If we had a magic wand and could make all the fentanyl disappear, there is no doubt that we would see a considerable decline in accidental drug intoxication deaths in Connecticut.”

The number of overdose deaths had dropped for the first time in 2018 to 1,017, Gill said. Last year marked the first time the state reached the 1,200 death milestone.

A spokesman for Gov. Ned Lamont said Friday that state agencies must continue to work together and that perhaps federal funding is needed.

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Recommended for you

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.