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La Crosse County more than halfway to matching 2020 overdose death total

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Seven months into 2021, La Crosse County is more than halfway to the number of drug overdose deaths reported last year. 

Al Bliss from the Alliance to Heal says the overdose total so far this year may be up to 23, compared to 20 a week ago. 

There were 40 total deaths from drug overdoses in the county during 2020. 

Fentanyl has been a factor in many of the recent deaths, and Bliss says it’s not certain whether some people are consuming fentanyl accidentally, or deliberately.

“I don’t know what the demand is, if they’re saying ‘I just want heroin and the good stuff, or I want mostly fentanyl,'” says Bliss.

He believes there may be trading going on among dealers to make sure they are supplied with both of those drugs. 

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.