Maine Releases 2017 State Drug Death Statistics

In an interview this week on the radio show “Wabanaki Windows” on WERU Dr. Marcella Sorg discussed the report on Maine drug death statistics for 2017 with radio host Donna Loring. The State of Maine saw 418 drug-induced deaths in 2017, according to figures recently released by Attorney General Janet Mills. Drug overdose deaths increased by 11% in 2017 over the previous year. The number of deaths in 2017 was driven by a sharp increase of 27% in deaths due to illegal fentanyl and fentanyl analogs, while heroin deaths decreased. Most drug deaths were caused by two or more drugs, and the average cause of death involved 3 drugs.

The data was collected and analyzed by Marcella H. Sorg, PhD, of the Margaret Chase Smith Policy Center, under a contract with the Office of the Attorney General. Dr. Sorg and her team of researchers at the Policy Center have worked over the past several years to analyze drug overdose deaths and trends in Maine.

This report on 2017 Drug Deaths can be found  at the Maine Office of Attorney General’s website (

The full EXPANDED MAINE DRUG DEATH REPORT FOR 2017 from Dr. Marcella Sorg is available for download.