Opioid deaths projected to fall slightly in Virginia

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Opioid-related deaths in Virginia are set to fall slightly this year compared to the year before.

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports that the Virginia Medical Examiner’s Office predicts there will be 1,175 deaths due to opioid overdoses this year.

That’s down from 1,230 in 2017, but higher than any other year.

Deaths due to cocaine have increased since 2012 and are on pace to hit 445. Methamphetamine deaths are projected at 106 in 2018, up from only four in 2012.

Drug overdoses are the leading cause of unnatural death in Virginia, higher than traffic crashes and gun-related violence.

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