Drug overdose deaths increase in Chaves County | KOB 4
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Drug overdose deaths increase in Chaves County

Faith Egbuonu
January 11, 2019 10:18 AM

CHAVES COUNTY, N.M. The state department of health has new data on drug overdose deaths for Chaves County showing an increase from 20.8 in 2016 to 38.2 in 2017, per 100,000.

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"We're glad we're not seeing a spike statewide, but in Chaves County, there is an increase --and, it is concerning.  It's a significant increase,” said Kim Rutley, the prevention coordinator at La Casa Behavioral Health.

Rutley and her team were determined to figure out why there was an increase in the community.

"What was the source of their addiction? Did it come from a prescription drug? Was it a street origin? Or was it a combination? Could there possibly be another drug that entered into the community such as fentanyl, because we know it's very deadly,” Rutley said.

Despite the increase, Rutley is positive the long term results will show improvements. They have collaborated with local health officials to combat the crisis.

"We do have an opioid core team that meets. It's professionals from all levels of healthcare, and we're discussing what are the best strategies for Chaves County,” Rutley said.

One plan is to limit social access. Rutley wants to prevent drug prescriptions from being shared, taken and sold. She also encourages people to seek treatment for addiction to prevent deadly overdoses.

Visit La Casa Behavioral Health and the New Mexico Recovery Center for more information.  https://www.lacasahealth.com/services/behavioral-health

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Faith Egbuonu

Copyright 2019 KOB-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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