Police in Massachusetts are warning about an “exceptionally deadly” lethal batch of heroin called, “Hollywood,” which claimed eight lives in the past week in Hampden County — four of the suspected fatal overdoses occuring just four days ago.
According to the Boston Herald, suspected fatal heroin overdoses with the “Hollywood” stamp were found in Holyoke, Chicopee, Palmer and Ware. An investigation by the state and local police into the source of the batch is ongoing, police said.
“The heroin problem remains one of the most pressing public safety and public health challenges confronting the state,”
state police Col. Richard D. McKeon said.
The four Hampden County overdose victims who died in the past four days are all men: a 54-year-old and a 51-year-old from Chicopee, a 44-year-old from Holyoke and a 31-year-old from Palmer, according to a state police.
State police also released statistics for 2015, showing that officers have responded to 755 fatal suspected heroin overdoses. According to the Boston Herald, in early November, a dangerous batch of heroin in Haverhill resulted in five suspected overdoses in just a matter of a few hours.
Dr. Mark Gendreau, Lahey Hospital’s vice chairman of emergency medicine, made an interesting analogy regarding the use of heroin indicating, it’s like “playing Russian roulette. You don’t know what’s in it, or how much there is. There’s a lot of unknowns,” he said.
Of the 755 suspected fatal heroin overdoses, 591 victims were male and 164 were female. The average age of the victims was 36, Daily Mail reported.
A Massachusetts State police spokesman urged anyone using heroin or any illicit drug to “seek medical help and counseling.”
“There are many resources available to those fighting addiction,” he said.