Despite Decline in Opioid-related Deaths, Addiction Still a Problem for Cambridge

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  • Cambridge has seen an increase in addiction-related deaths since 2012. In 2017, 26 Cantabrigians died of drug- and alcohol-related overdoses. (Source: Medford Overcoming Addiction)
  • Pat Medeiros, the founder of Cambridge Overcoming Addiction, speaks at a vigil held in May 2017 at Cambridge City Hall.
  • Pat Medeiros, the founder of Cambridge Overcoming Addiciton, lost her daughter, Bernadine, to heroin addiction in 2012. Since then, Medeiros has been holding annual vigils for victims of addiction.
  • Cambridge firefighters ring a bell to honor each of the victims of alcohol and drug addiction in Cambridge.
  • Some 30 people showed up to the vigil organized by Cambridge Overcoming Addiction held at Cambridge City Hall, May 2017.
Pat Medeiros is the founder of Cambridge Overcoming Addiction. She lost her daughter, Bernadine, to a 20-year heroin addiction.

As has been reported, opioid related deaths in Massachusetts are down 10 percent so far this year. According to the third-quarter opioid statistics report released earlier this month by the Commonwealth, 167 fewer people died in the first nine months of 2017 as compared to the same timeframe last year. But addiction is still a problem, which is why one Cambridge woman -- Pat Medeiros, who lost her daughter to a 20-year heroin addiction -- continues to fight against the epidemic. It's an epidimic that, Medeiros says, has hit far too close to home for her and her community. Frank Morris Lopez reports from the Cambridge Overcoming Addiction vigil held earlier this year.