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Lackawanna County Receives Grant Money to Combat Opioid Epidemic

SCRANTON, Pa. — Lackawanna County has received a $900,000 grant from the United States Department of Justice to help combat the opioid epidemic. The Distr...

SCRANTON, Pa. -- Lackawanna County has received a $900,000 grant from the United States Department of Justice to help combat the opioid epidemic.

The District Attorney says they'll use the money to collect data on all the past opioid overdose deaths in the county, how people became addicted, how they got the drugs and how they died.

To do that four new employees will be hired including a detective, a prosecutor and people with mental health or statistics backgrounds.

"We can focus on trends, blame a bad batch of fentanyl, blame doctors for overprescribing, but the truth is, we really do not know the cause of opioid deaths and there have not been studies in Lackawanna County performed in order to determine what our problem is here locally," said D.A. Mark Powell.

The new overdose death review team will start compiling that data next year and use it to come up with a solution to the opioid epidemic.