Authorities in Quincy have responded to 19 opioid-related overdoses in the last 10 days, three of which were fatal and happened last weekend alone, according to the Quincy Police Department.
“It’s always surprising when there’s a spike,” said Det. Lieutenant Patrick Glynn, who heads the department’s narcotics unit.
What’s unusual about this series of overdoses is that there’s no common denominator connecting them, according to Glynn.
Officers were called to respond to overdoses all across the city. They found people in their 40s and 50s, and a few in their 20s. The three who died were between 20 and 50. Some of the overdoses were related to pharmaceuticals, while others were heroin.
“It is concerning that there were that many,” Glynn said.
From May through the end of August, Quincy had a total of seven fatal overdoses, according to Glynn. While the city has seen a reduction in deaths, the number of non-fatal overdoses has grown.
“The only thing we can draw from that is the availability of naloxone,” Glynn said, pointing to the prevalence of the overdose-reversing drug known as Narcan.
An estimated 984 people fatally overdosed in Massachusetts in the first half of this year, compared to the 784 deaths the previous year during the same period, according to a report by the state Department of Health. In addition to the rise in deaths from opioids, health officials said more people in the state are dying from the synthetic painkiller fentanyl.