NewsLocal News


Social workers, police officers team up to help opioid overdose survivors

MetroHealth Medical Center expands unique program
Quick Response Team Parma
Posted at 5:22 PM, Oct 19, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-19 18:09:44-04

PARMA, Ohio — A program started during the opioid epidemic by MetroHealth Office of Opioid Safety is expanding.

There are now three Quick Response Teams. The Parma Police Department, the Westshore Enforcement Bureau, and the Cuyahoga County Sheriff’s Department.

Kelly Cioletti and Lt. Oliver Simic makes up Parma Police Department’s Quick Response Team.

Once a week, they are dispatched to help those who have overdosed on opioids in the Parma.

MetroHealth launched the unique program two years ago but is now expanding it.

Within a week of a reported non-fatal overdose, Quick Response Teams contact survivors at home, knocking on doors armed with information about getting help, Narcan, and Fentanyl testing strips.

“We’re helping the individual and meeting them where they’re at,” said Kelly Cioletti, Social Work Coordinator for the Office of Opioid Safety at MetroHealth Medical Center.

It is all to save and help turn around lives.

“It’s definitely multifaceted. We want to stop the people bringing drugs into the community. We have to stop that, our narcotics unit works on that. This also helps get them treatment, get them help,” said Parma Captain Thomas Siedlecki.

A quick response team is made up of one MetroHealth social worker and a police officer.

“Most of the time when we go up to houses, this is the way I’m dressed, in plain clothes. So we’re trying to take law enforcement out of our meetings,” said Simic.

Download the News 5 Cleveland app now for more stories from us, plus alerts on major news, the latest weather forecast, traffic information and much more. Download now on your Apple device here, and your Android device here.

You can also catch News 5 Cleveland on Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, YouTube TV, DIRECTV NOW, Hulu Live and more. We're also on Amazon Alexa devices. Learn more about our streaming options here.