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Allen County commissioners extend needle-exchange program

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FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WOWO): Allen County Commissioners extended the county’s needle-exchange program another two years, according to the News-Sentinel.

The extension came during Friday’s meeting to combat the ongoing opioid epidemic.

More than 14,000 needles have been collected through the program since its start last November, with more than 14,500 distributed. Allen County Health Commissioner Dr. Deborah McMahan says the 96% rate of return, compared to a typical 80% return rate, is due to the program providing convenient containers for used syringes.

She also says that overdoses and overdose deaths continue to climb this year compared to last year.

This year, there have been 65 deadly overdoses through the first seven months, with 45 during that same time frame in 2016. There have been 740 nonfatal overdoses already this year. Last year, there were 804.

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