WCBE

Deaths From Illicit Drugs Rose In Ohio Last Year

Sep 1, 2017

Credit shutterstock.com

New limits on prescription painkillers took effect this week.

The state says prescription opioid deaths are down from their peak in 2011, and the number of heroin deaths last year was the same as in 2015. But deaths from illicit drugs such as cocaine and methamphetamines have increased.  Ohio Public Radio's Andy Chow reports.

More than half of drug overdose deaths last year involved the highly-potent opioid fentanyl. Substances like cocaine and meth are more often laced with the drug that can be 100 times more powerful than heroin.

 

Tracy Plouck, director of mental health and addiction services, says part of the problem is that some people think one drug is safer than another.

 

Plouck: “You don’t know what’s in any illicit drug that might be obtained and so the false sense of security that people may have that, ‘oh this is not heroin this is only…’ you know some other substance, including marijuana is setting some folks up for risk that could otherwise be avoided.”

It should be noted that there is no record yet of an overdose case where pot was laced with fentanyl.