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Medical Examiner: Number of overdose deaths this year surpasses last year's total

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- The Milwaukee County Medical Examiner tweeted Wednesday that there have been 343 drug-related overdose deaths in Milwaukee County in 2017.

According to the tweet, that number is now equal to the total number of deaths for all of 2016. 

The Medical Examiner's Office also confirmed that they were performing five autopsies on Wednesday and that three of those were probable OD's.

Back in October, the Medical Examiner confirmed that heroin is no longer the leading cause of overdose deaths, instead, Fentanyl has taken its place.

In hopes to combat the opioid epidemic, lawmakers have been pushing for prescription drop boxes to be placed at local businesses. Officials say that if everyone chips in, they could put a dent in the current drug overdose stats.

"By the end of the year potentially more than 400 people dead in Milwaukee County, that'll be four times what we see in homicides," said Alderman Michael Murphy to CBS 58 News in an interview back in October. 

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