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Kasich Urged To Declare Heroin Health Emergency With Increased Death Rate

Pressure on Gov. Kasich to declare a public health heroin emergency has hit new levels with more officials calling for the same. Calls by the leader of Hamilton County's heroin task force were further reiterated by Newtown Police Chief, Tom Synan. The leaders expressed their concerns over the rising levels of heroin usage into the Tri-state region.

This comes as Dr. Lakshmi Sammarco, Hamilton County Coroner, revealed that there are 8 confirmed carfentanil related deaths with another 5 deaths being suspected to be related to the same drug. The more deadly and potent opioid is said to be taking over the region’s youths rapidly than any other drug. Scientific research reveal that the common player, Carfentanil drug, is 10,000 time potent as compared to morphine. This drug has been used as an elephant tranquilizer for a long time, but it now finds its way to human usage.

Earlier in July this year, a warning was issued by the Hamilton County Heroin Coalition on the changing trends in the drug market where heroin supplies are being mixed with Carfentanil.

The statement read that: “We’re profusely bleeding and due to this drug. A Band-Aid or even someone putting pressure on this wound may not be enough. We need progressive action against it and we need it now."

The capacity to handle this drug has been under close scrutiny as it’s a new emergence. It was until last week that Sammarco’s office successfully identified elements of carfentanil from a Cleveland Zoo sample. She even called for additional support from law enforcement in Ohio to help combat the surge. Her office is currently struggling with 275 cases that may only be tested satisfactorily with urgent help. However, she warned that on the need to test for carfentanil presence as it has potent effects to eve first responders.

“It is going to be very delicate for first responders thus very vital to know the elements and the likely effect on them.”

In earlier cases, responders have been urged to use 6 doses of Narcan, which is a perfect anti-opiate treatment, to revive carfentanil victims.”

The drug is basically cut into heroin to increase the potency making the substance deadlier than before. A simple dose will have devastating effect on the brain and general body functioning. A director at Akron Zoo for animal health expressed his worry on carfentanil as it is 100 times deadly than fentanyl. A simple drop could get through the eye and still have intense effect advising anyone getting close to it to have protective glasses and gloves on.

Curbing the spread has become more complicated as first responders or anyone who gets close to it may be affected. Furthermore, the addictive characteristics of carfentanil has scared users with harmful withdrawal effects. As put by Meagan Petty who used heroin before, reveals that many users are scared of the withdrawal effects more than deaths itself. However, she suggested that users are not monsters, but just patients who need urgent help.

Authorities have promised to introduce legislation that will help curb carfentanil shipment from China and India from entering the country. It is yet to be seen what the Kasich will do about the matter.


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