Media cover drug death report compiled by Sorg

The Bangor Daily News, the Associated Press, WMTW (Channel 8 in Portland), WAGM (Channel 8 in Presque Isle) and the VillageSoup advanced a drug death report compiled by Marcella Sorg, a research professor at the Margaret Chase Smith Policy Center at the University of Maine. The report, which the Maine Office of the Attorney General and the Office of Chief Medical Examiner released, presents figures demonstrating that drug overdose deaths significantly increased during the first quarter of 2020. The Enhanced Q1 Drug Death Report, which was also shared by the center, showed that 127 deaths were caused by drugs in the first three months of 2020. This represents a 23% increase over the fourth quarter of 2019. “Most of the increase is related to international and out-of-state drug trafficking,” said Sorg, who is also a forensic anthropologist and works with the Climate Change Institute, to WMTW. The U.S. News & World Report, WABI (Channel 5), the Caledonian Record, WBZ (Channel 4 in Boston) and the Connecticut Post shared the AP article. The Portland Press Herald also highlighted the report in a story about the city’s new public health director. The Mount Desert Islander described the report in an opinion piece about overdose deaths in Maine.