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Health officials report 449 overdoses in Summit County since January 1

Posted: 11:56 AM, May 03, 2019
Updated: 2019-05-03 11:56:12-04
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SUMMIT COUNTY, Ohio — The Summit County Health Department has reported that from Jan. 1 to April 30, there have been 449 drug doses, bringing that to an average of 3.7 overdoses per day.

Health officials say 24 of the 449 people who came to the emergency room made more than one visit.

Key highlights from the report include:

Age group with the highest overdoses

People in 25-34 and 35-49 age categories have the highest percentage overdoses.

Geography

Cities with the zip codes 44203 and 44310 had the highest number of overdoses at 48 and 42, respectively.

Trends in substances

A report by the Ohio Substance Abuse Monitoring Network shows the availability of heroin is growing while the quality is going down. Heroin in the region has morphed into pure fentanyl and by 2017, users said dealers deliberately reduce potency, both to increase profit and reduce the odds of someone dying from overdoses, which could lead to the dealers avoiding murder and manslaughter charges.

Another finding the report revealed users started switching to methamphetamine to reduce the risk of dying from heroin overdose.

In 2014, methamphetamine only appeared on one death certificate, while in 2017, that number increased to 54 death certificates.

Read the full report below.

Drug Overdoses Data Brief April 2019