After more than 200 drug-related deaths in 2016, New Orleans Coroner says city "in the midst of an accelerating public health crisis"

Gambit - More than 200 people died from drug-related causes in 2016, more than double the number of similar deaths from 2015. Compared to 2015 deaths, the number of people who died with the synthetic opioid fentanyl in their system more than tripled.

According to a report recently released by New Orleans Coroner Dr. Jeffrey Rouse, of last year's record 211 drug-related deaths, 166 involved opiates — compared to 81 in 2015. Forty-eight people died with fentanyl in their system. There were 13 fentanyl-related deaths in 2015, when there were 93 drug-related deaths overall.

“New Orleans is in the midst of an accelerating public health crisis of drug-related deaths, driven chiefly but not exclusively by the ongoing national opiate epidemic," Rouse said in a statement.