State health officials believe more than 1,000 people died as a result of opioid-related overdoses in Massachusetts last year.
The figures were released Tuesday as Gov. Charlie Baker joined U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Sylvia Burwell and state Health and Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders in Boston for a discussion of the heroin and painkiller abuse crisis.
The state Department of Public Health said there were 600 confirmed opioid overdose deaths in the Bay State in 2014, with the agency's models indicating an additional 408 deaths for a total of 1,008.
That represents a 3 percent increase over the 967 deaths in the previous year, and is 33 percent above 2012.
Writing in an op-ed piece in The Boston Globe, (http://bit.ly/1zjEviC ) Baker, Burwell and Sudders call the numbers "staggering. "