West Virginia developing further response to opioid epidemic

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — West Virginia health officials say they will to submit to Gov. Jim Justice plans to respond to the state’s opioid epidemic by mid-January.

The Department of Health and Human Resources says it will involve public engagement and a partnership with regional and national experts.

West Virginia established a new Office of Drug Control Policy in the department under a law enacted earlier this year.

West Virginia recorded a record 884 overdose deaths last year.

Health officials say preliminary analysis shows that seven out of 10 people who died had a drug prescription filled within a year of their death, and four in 10 overdose had one filled within 30 days before.

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