Wednesday, May 15, 2019
Media Contact: Benjamin Paulin
Plymouth County Highlighted in State Report on Decline of Opioid-Related Overdose Deaths
The Police Chiefs of Plymouth County and Plymouth County Outreach (PCO) are pleased to announce that the county was singled-out and recognized by the state today for the many ongoing efforts countywide in helping to reduce the number of opioid-related overdose deaths.
The Massachusetts Department of Public Health issued its quarterly report on opioid-related overdose deaths among Massachusetts residents today. The report states that overdose deaths in Massachusetts are continuing to decline, falling an estimated four percent between 2016 and 2018. The statistics in Plymouth County show even better results.
“While the report shows a decline in the opioid-related overdose death rate statewide, there were also particularly notable declines in some pockets of the state. One such place was in Plymouth County, including the city of Brockton, which experienced a notable decrease in deaths in 2018 compared with 2017,” the report states.
In its county-by-county report, the state DPH indicates that there was a 26% drop in overdose deaths in Plymouth County from 2017 to 2018.
In March, Plymouth County Outreach released the data from its 2018 Annual Report, showing a more conservative, but still impactful 18 percent decrease in fatal overdoses and a 13 percent decrease in non-fatal overdoses in Plymouth County, compared to 2017. It should be noted that the data compiled by PCO is collected differently than the data compiled by state, thus the difference in percentages.
“To see Plymouth County recognized in the state’s report only further validates the hard work that we have been doing with Plymouth County Outreach over the past few years,” East Bridgewater Police Chief Scott Allen said. “As our outreach efforts and capabilities continue to expand and grow, we hope to see those numbers drop further until they are down to zero.”
Last October, PCO was awarded the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) Leadership in Community Policing Award.
In addition, PCO is currently eight months into a two-year, federal Bureau of Justice Assistance grant (Comprehensive Opioid Site-Based Program grant), which is providing $496,000 to PCO to expand and build upon the great work of the coalition throughout the county.
Earlier today, the Police Assisted Addiction and Recovery Initiative (P.A.A.R.I.) announced that P.A.A.R.I. has been awarded a $930,000 Integrative Behavioral Health grant by South Shore Health.
South Shore Health awarded $2.4 million to nonprofit groups this spring to support behavioral healthcare in Plymouth and Norfolk counties. P.A.A.R.I. was one of two nonprofit groups selected to receive a five-year grant for $930,000 this cycle.
The grant will support a new partnership between P.A.A.R.I. and Plymouth County Outreach. Over the next five years, P.A.A.R.I. will work with PCO to implement a “hub model” throughout the county to expand the behavioral health services available to the community, and coordinate outreach visits for individuals identified as being at acutely elevated risk due to substance use and/or mental health issues.
About Plymouth County Outreach: Plymouth County Outreach is a collaborative of police departments throughout Plymouth County led by the following chiefs: Abington Chief David Majenski, Bridgewater Chief Christopher Delmonte, Bridgewater State University Chief David Tillinghast, Brockton Chief John Crowley, Brockton Police Lt. Richard Linehan, Carver Chief Marc Duphily, Duxbury Chief Matthew Clancy, East Bridgewater Chief Scott Allen, Halifax Chief Ted Broderick, Hanover Chief Walter Sweeney, Hanson Chief Michael Miksch, Hingham Chief Glenn Olsson, Hull Chief John Dunn, Kingston Chief Maurice Splaine, Lakeville Chief Frank Alvihiera, Marion Chief John Garcia, Marshfield Chief Phillip Tavares, Mattapoisett Chief Mary Lyons, Middleboro Chief Joseph Perkins, Norwell Chief Ted Ross, Pembroke Chief Richard Wall, Plymouth Chief Michael Botieri, Plympton Chief Patrick Dillon, Rochester Chief Robert Small, Rockland Chief John Llewellyn, Scituate Chief Michael Stewart, Wareham Chief John Walcek, West Bridgewater Chief Victor Flaherty and Whitman Chief Scott D. Benton.