ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) – A state report shows the number of deadly opioid overdoses in Alaska increased again with the powerful painkiller fentanyl linked to a larger portion of the deaths last year.

KTUU-TV reports the preliminary numbers from the state Department of Health and Social Services show that 108 Alaska residents died from opioid overdoses in 2017, a number that has been steadily rising over the past seven years.

According to the report, 623 opioid overdose deaths have been reported in the state from 2010-17, increasing by 77 percent.

Fentanyl-related deaths have increased dramatically, linked to 5 in 2016 and 28 last year.

According to the report, the state’s opioid epidemic disproportionately affects certain demographics, including men, Alaska Native and white people, and people between the ages of 25 and 44.

Information from: KTUU-TV,

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