Ohio’s Franklin County Experiences 11 Overdose Deaths This Past Weekend


Franklin County in Ohio saw another surge in drug-related overdoses last weekend, according to The Columbus Dispatch.

Dr. Anahi Ortiz, the Franklin County coroner, told The Dispatch that 11 people had died.

Since the Wuhan virus came to Ohio, Franklin County has been one of state’s hardest-hit areas in terms of overdoses.

“I think the pandemic has just made the situation worse for people, (with) unemployment, isolation,” the coroner told The Dispatch.

These high overdose numbers follow a disturbing pattern for the county. During the weekend from May 1 to May 2, Franklin County saw 28 non-fatal overdoses, Ortiz said on Facebook.

“As you may have seen, Friday night to Saturday night our county saw 28 non-fatal overdoses. This is a high number for our county. COVID 19 has showed us the vulnerabilities and deficiencies in our addiction services,” she said.

2020 has been a difficult year for Franklin County in terms of drug overdose-related deaths. Ortiz said from January to April 15, the county saw a 50% increase in fatal overdoses.

“For the month of April alone we saw 62 people die of overdoses,” she said. “In April we saw a younger age group dying of overdoses than in 2019: 25 to 35. In 2019 the majority were 35 and up.”

“We need to push narcan and even as important fentanyl test strips. Much of the cocaine here in Franklin County is cut with fentanyl and sold without people knowing,” she added. “We need to check in with those who use. And, we need to continue to advocate for wiser and better ways of treating those with addictions.”

Overdose deaths in Franklin County have continued to rise in the last couple of years. In 2019, the county saw 597 overdose deaths, which was up 14 percent from 2018, according to a Franklin County Coroner’s Office report.

Ninety-one percent of overdose deaths were due to opioids, the report says. Furthermore, fentanyl, which is commonly found in opioids, was found in 81 percent of drug overdoses.

“Nearly 3 out of every 4 overdose deaths in Franklin during 2019 was between the ages of 25 years old and 54 years old, the report reads. “Further, 9 out of every 10 overdose deaths in Franklin County during 2019 fell between the ages of 25 and 64 years old.”

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Zachery Schmidt is the digital editor of Star News Digital Media. If you have any tips, email Zachery at [email protected]







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