Everyone remembers how Taunton came to publicly fight the opioid epidemic even as it hot hard on other parts of the nation. Three years ago, addiction and overdoses were all over the news. Regardless of the state or the county that one lives in, there was constant worry that this epidemic was going to wipe out a generation if nothing is done to stop it. At that time Taunton was publicly facing the problem and using various aggressive tactics to combat it. So, what has changed three years later?
The Epidemic Still Persists
What is troubling is the revelation that despite the way Taunton went all-out in the fight against addiction, statistics show that the problem is still on the rise. You can easily remember in 2014 when Massachusetts Senator Edward J. Markey held a conference to address the issues. Accompanied by various influential leaders from the drug agency, the senator chose to underscore the urgency of this situation. It was then that a group of firefighters were sent to an overdose that had been reported during the session. However, everyone is now asking, has the approach brought the effects that it was meant for?
The Rise Has Been Steady
It is saddening that even though the city has chosen a direct approach to fight the opioid epidemic, statistics point to a situation that is getting worse every day. Yo may be baffled to find out that over the past years, the number of casualties has been increasing rapidly. For example, the number of opioid related fatalities last year was s36 up from ii in 2016. When the city launched its response in 2014, there were 14 reported fatalities. These are the official numbers as per the records at Taunton Police. Among the victims, the police say that there were nine women and the rest were men.
No Fatalities Yet This Year
There may be a little hope if you look at the statics that show that opioids and drug abuse have not claimed any fatalities this year. However, if you also consider the fact that already six people have been treated after going though overdoses, you can easily see that the situation is not as good as it should be. At this rate, you cannot imagine what would happen if these overdoses end up being deaths. The number might be way above what was recorded last year and this is not a good situation to be with.
Recent announcements that the entire state and country is experiencing an escalated opioid problem does not Taunton either. It only means that a solution has to be found sooner than later. In addition to that, it is an indication that despite the public and aggressive approach that the city has been taking over the past three years, there is need for an alternative solution. Clearly, the steps that have been taken are not enough. On the other hand, the fact that local leaders have been united in addressing this problem is an indication that a perfect solution will be found.