Those fighting opioids fear 2019 could be Trumbull County’s deadliest year yet

Local News

WARREN, Ohio (WKBN) — There’s a deadly surge of drugs passing through Trumbull County and after seeing overdose numbers decline last year, people fighting the battle are afraid this year will be one of the deadliest yet.

Rescue workers in Trumbull County have been busy treating overdoses this year. So far, 27 people have died in 2019. That means in just three months, there have been nearly half of the overdose deaths from all of last year.

“We’re seeing a mixture,” said Capt. Tony Villanueva, with the Trumbull Ashtabula Group (TAG) Drug Task Force. “They’re including Tramadol into heroin. We’re seeing Quinine in our heroin, which is used to treat malaria.”

Added to that are extremely high doses of fentanyl, helping to fuel the spike.

The increase in overdoses is putting a tremendous strain on Trumbull County — the recovery community, the medical services, almost everybody who has some part in the fight.

“It puts a tax on the hospital system, on the whole EMS system as a whole, and takes us away from other calls we could be doing,” said Tom Young, with MedStar.

The ambulance company is using about 40 doses of naloxone each week.

The increase in calls is putting an emotional strain on everyone involved.

“The past week has been difficult in our office and for me, very emotionally draining because we went to the recovery house that experienced an overdose the next day,” said Lauren Thorp, with the county’s Mental Health and Recovery Board.

Trumbull County is now warning drug users when dangerous mixes are on the streets. The hope is that people will be careful and it will help prevent deaths.

They are holding out hope for a new treatment.

“I think there could be a solution, I just don’t think we’ve found the right one yet,” Young said.

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