In the early months of 2018, there was a decline in opioid deaths as well as prescriptions for the narcotic filled in Massachusetts.
The state Department of Public Health released a quarterly report this week estimating there was a 5 percent drop in opioid-related deaths in the first quarter of 2018. This follows a hopeful trend in recent years.
State health officials estimate 2,016 deaths in the state were connected to fatal overdoses. 2017 figures marked a drop of 133 deaths from the prior year.
There has also been a six-figure drop in opioid prescriptions so far in 2018. About 265,000 patients have filled prescriptions in the first three months of 2018 – down from about 390,000 filling such prescriptions in early 2015.