As COVID-19 continues to control many aspects of our lives, opioid use has not taken even a slight pause. Saratoga County and Rensselaer County have reported 30 overdose cases just this week. Unfortunately two people lost their lives in Troy due to overdoses.

It would seem logical to me that everyone would want to do everything they can to avoid hospitals right now. We‘ve heard a lot about boosting our immune systems and staying healthy. We try to avoid unnecessary contact with others and we try to avoid accidents.

For some of the vulnerable folks in our community, the struggle to stay clean is just too much. According to Spectrum, in less than a 24 hour period, 30 people reportedly overdosed between Wednesday night and Thursday morning in just two counties. According to Troy Police, 12 people overdosed and two people died in Troy. Deputy Chief, Dan DeWolf, of the Troy Police Department stressed his concern by saying, “This is serious stuff, not just people getting high and hanging out, having a good time. People are dying.” Troy Police say that at least three of the overdoses cause automobile accidents.

Police believe that cocaine laced with fentanyl may be partially responsible for the recent overdoses. Rensselaer County Executive Steve McLaughlin is very concerned for his residents. He asked that residents reach out for fentanyl test strips. He also says that they will deliver Narcan to those who need it, with no questions asked.

Now is not the time to relax our standards of trying to maintain good health. We must all do our best to stay safe during these trying times. Do you think the pandemic is making these users want to get extra high when they get a chance? If you know someone who is struggling with drug addiction, reach out to them and encourage them to seek help for their addiction. Be safe and enjoy this very different holiday weekend!

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