The most recent data (up to six months, but especially the most recent 2-3 months) is not complete and does not reflect the total number of deaths for those months.
Fentanyl, a highly potent opioid, poses a great threat and exacerbates our overdose crisis. The number of overdose deaths related to fentanyl has increased 15-fold since 2009. A significant portion of the 2016 deaths involved fentanyl.
Like many other states, Rhode Island's overdose crisis began with prescription drugs. Since 2009 deaths caused by prescription drugs have leveled; deaths from illicit drugs are on the rise. Overdose deaths caused by a combination of illicit drugs and prescription medication are up nearly a third since 2011.
About 3 out of 4 people who die of an overdose are men.
All age groups are affected, but most overdoses occur among adults.