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Police Chief credits Narcan for dramatic drop in drug deaths last year

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Drug overdose deaths for 2022 were half of previous year’s totals

  There were six fatal drug overdoses reported in Saugus last year – half as many as in 2021, according to statistics released by Saugus Police Chief Michael Ricciardelli. “So we had an increase in the total number of events but a decrease in the number of fatalities,” Chief Ricciardelli told The Saugus Advocate yesterday.

  “I think that we can attribute this to the prompt use of Narcan by our first responders and by the reporting parties who seem to have better access to the Narcan,” the chief said.

  Saugus had 111 total incidents with six fatal incidents, and Narcan was administered 62 times, according to statistics released by the police chief. In 2021, Saugus had 101 total incidents with 12 fatal incidents and Narcan was administered 66 times, the chief noted.

  “We are finding that more and more opioid users and family members are keeping Narcan in their homes, cars and on their person,” Chief Ricciardelli said.

  “This may be the result of the Saugus Opioid Outreach program where our first responders perform follow up visits to the overdose victims. During these visits the overdose victims are provided with treatment options and are also given units of Narcan to have on hand in case of a future overdose,” he said.

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