LEMOYNE, Pa. (WHTM) — Three times in three days — that is how many times West Shore Regional Police say a man overdosed and had to be revived by officers with Narcan.

Police Chief Anthony Minium said this incident is part of a recent spike in overdoses. In just two weeks, he has seen the number of overdoses this year almost double. He said police are seeing more cases like this, where people are revived only to use and overdose again.

The West Shore Regional Police Department typically sees an average of 15 overdoses a year, but 2022 is looking far worse. “We’re on pace to hit 25 or plus,” Minium said. “I don’t know what’s going on, if there’s a hot batch out there right now.”

Minium said his officers are prepared to respond. West Shore police have carried the opioid overdose reversal medicine Narcan since 2018, and they are using it more than ever.

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“It’s sad because of the amount of people that we have to use Narcan on, especially with our smaller population; however, it’s a pandemic, it’s an epidemic,” he said.

Minium said the rise of overdoses is also taking up more time and police resources. “We’re responding, trying to take care of the emergency at hand, then the investigation that follows. It takes a lot of resources to handle one of those cases,” he said.

The chief has seen the drug landscape shift during his career.

“When I first started, marijuana and crack were the hot items,” he said. Minium said it is now heroin and fentanyl driving overdoses. It is a problem the state is tracking too.

“The folks who are manufacturing it just continue to get more creative, constantly trying to stay one step ahead,” Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs Secretary Jennifer Smith said.

For Minium and Smith, their focus is trying to get people connected to resources.

“If you come in and say I have a problem, we’re not going to put handcuffs on you, we’re going to try to give you the help,” Minium said.

“The most successful way to reach people is to meet them where they are, and sometimes people aren’t quite ready for what we call treatment,” Smith said.

It is about letting people know help is out there. “I’m hoping that they hear the message there’s hope on the other side, there’s a better life to live,” Smith said.

Minium said West Shore Regional police also work with JFT, a recovery agency in Lemoyne. That partnership is one way police try to get people struggling with substance use connected to resources.