Kentucky officials announced on Thursday the first statewide decrease in drug overdose deaths since 2013.
The state report shows that 1,333 people died from drug overdoses in 2018, down almost 15 percent from a record 1,566 deaths in 2017.
The drop in 2018 comes after several years of increases in overdose deaths from either opioid painkillers or drugs such as heroin and fentanyl.
Federal prosecutors will continue to work hand-in-hand with state and local law enforcement agencies to have a significant impact in the fight against heroin and drugs like meth in Kentucky. Those in both the Eastern and Western Districts are actively prosecuting overdose cases where as little as one pill has caused death or serious bodily injury. U.S. Attorney’s Russell Coleman and Robert Duncan acknowledged treatment and prevention efforts are key in solving the crisis in a release on Thursday but did go on to say that enforcement will also remain a vital deterrent in the ongoing battle.