Local officials shed light on heroin, drug crisis

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – There were 13 opioid overdoses in Erie County this week alone, according to Commissioner of Health Dr. Gale Burstein. That makes the total number so far for this year 34.

Officials discussed the recent crisis in opioid overdoses Thursday afternoon. Burstein said the county is on track for nearly 200 deaths in 2015 from overdoses of heroin and fentanyl.

Local officials described how they are trying to fight the drugs.

First responders are carrying and using Narcan to respond to overdoses. Narcan helps reverse the effects of opioids. The county said they have worked to train first responders and agencies, saving dozens of lives so far.

Next week, the county is offering free community trainings with Horizon Health and Evergreen Health Services in the use of Narcan.

U.S. Attorney Bill Hochul wants people to know, sellers and distributors of heroin and fentanyl will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

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