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Arizona’s new opioid real-time reporting data shows 444 possible ODs

(AP Photo)

PHOENIX — There have been 444 possible opioid overdoses, 36 of them fatal, in the first two weeks of Arizona’s new real-time reporting system, health officials said.

“This is the first time Arizona has ever received this type of real time data,” Dr. Cara Christ, director of the Arizona Department of Health Services, said.

There were 200 suspected opioid overdoses reported in the first week of the 24-hour reporting requirements called for by an executive order from Gov. Doug Ducey.

Christ said the state has been collecting reports from law enforcement, first responders, health care professionals and health care facilities on any suspected overdoses that they come across.

Ducey declared a health crisis because of abuse of the drugs in June.

Data released in May showed 790 people died of an opioid overdose last year, an increase of 16 percent from 2015.

Christ said the most alarming finding of the first two weeks was the 36 suspected deaths.

“It’s an average of 18 per week,” she said. “We have 790 in 2016, which puts us potentially over if this trend continues.”

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