Dramatic increase in accidental drug overdoses

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Accidental drug overdoses in Montgomery County are dramatically increasing.

Public Health-Dayton and Montgomery County released the startling figures Tuesday afternoon.

226 people died from unintentional overdoes in 2013, up from 162 deaths in 2012.

The increase of 64 deaths from 2012 to 2013 is unprecedented.

An increase of heroin overdoses is partly to blame. 132 people died in 2013, up from 95 in 2012.

“It is my hope the record-setting 2013 unintentional drug overdose deaths motivate the entire community to implement effective actions to combat this unacceptable problem. All
of us need to participate in the solutions,” said Montgomery County Health Commissioner Jim Gross.

Public Health says the community is addressing the problem in various ways including billboards that warn of the dangers of heroin, initiative to help women addicted to opiates and the Conversion for Change Project that targets communities with the highest numbers of accidental drug overdoses.

“We can and must win the opiate epidemic battle in order to save lives. This epidemic is killing us and it needs the collective attention and resources of the entire county,” said Helen Jones-Kelley, executive director of Montgomery County Alcohol, Drug Addiction & Mental Health Services.

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