Similar to the national and state level trends, the opioid crisis has continued to grow in Litchfield County. During 2018, there were 68 fatal overdoses in Litchfield County, 63 of which were reported residents of the county. Of those five people who were not residents, one individual was from Hartford County, one from Fairfield County, one from New Haven County, one from the state of Massachusetts, and one with no reported residence. An additional 6 residents of Litchfield County fatally overdosed outside of the county. Thus, a total of 69 Litchfield County residents overdosed in Connecticut last year. Of the 69 who fatally overdosed, 67 were opioid related. Fentanyl was present in 60 of the overdose toxicology reports.
To compare, in 2017 there were 54 fatal overdoses that occurred in Litchfield County. Of those that occurred in Litchfield County, all but four were residents. Two of the non-residents were from New York State, one individual from Waterbury, and one who had no reported residence information. Three Litchfield County residents overdosed outside of the county, amount to a total of 53 residents of Litchfield County who fatally overdosed. Of the 53 overdoses, 48 were opioid related and 31 had fentanyl present.
During 2016 there were 33 overdoses within Litchfield County, two who were not residents. Six individuals who were residents of Litchfield County overdosed outside of the county, four in New Haven County and two in unreported locations. A total of 37 Litchfield County residents died of an overdose that year. Of those overdoses, 36 were opioid related with 18 of them involving Fentanyl. The comparison of the resident overdoses by year can be seen in Figure 3 below. The proportion of overdoses involving opioids did not change, the rapid increase in fentanyl over the last three years is alarming. The rapid increase in fentanyl presence is directly related to the increase in fatal overdoses in recent years.
Figure 3. The number residents of Litchfield County who have fatally overdosed from 2015 through 2018.