Albany, N.Y. (news10)-Opioid abuse is taking a toll on Capital Region communities as never before.
And 2021 appears to be shaping up as one of the worst in Albany County when it comes to fatal overdoses.
During a Monday press conference Albany County Executive Dan McCoy shared information on a shocking trend of opioid overdose deaths in 2021.
“Sadly 2021, cause 2020 was bad. It was higher than 2019, higher than 2018 and 17. And unfortunately 2021 is looking to be even deadlier,” said McCoy.
McCoy said from January to the end of May there were already 37 confirmed opioid overdose deaths in Albany County.
Including an additional 13 suspected cases still awaiting final toxicology results.
That could add up to a total of 50 opioid deaths in just the first five months of 2021.
Equal to all of 2017.
“Unfortunately because of the world we are living in they couldn’t handle it and we have gone backwards,” added McCoy.
He says this year is on a course to surpass 2020.
With 99 opioid deaths it was an especially deadly year due to the pandemic and economic shutdown.
That number was up from 62 in 2019.
“It’s hard. I’ve watched family and friends who have fought this and for whatever reason it’s rocked their world and they are struggling. So, if you know of anyone that has been sober, reach out to them. Just make sure they are ok, because unfortunately what’s going on is not getting better. It’s not good. And that’s not just going on in Albany, but in the state and across the nation.”