NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Metro Nashville Public Health officials have issued a warning about a spike in overdoses in Davidson County.
The Metro Public Health Department sent out the alert Friday afternoon, citing the increase in suspected overdose deaths over the last 24 hours. The department said most happened in the eastern and northern parts of the county.
MPHD has detected a significant increase in suspected overdose deaths in Davidson County over the past 24 hours.— NashvilleHealth (@NashvilleHealth) July 16, 2021
We urge residents to check in on loved ones, do not use alone, and call 911 in case of a possible overdose.
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Metro Health also mentioned some involved a white powdery substance.
IN-DEPTH: SUSPECTED OVERDOSE DEATHS UP IN 2021
However, this increase isn't new because we have seen an increase this year compared to last.
According to quarterly data from the Metro Nashville Public Health Department, there have been 360 suspected deadly overdoses this year. That's a significant jump of 11% since this same time last year.
75% of the overdose related toxicology reports this year found fentanyl, followed by 30% finding cocaine and 30% finding meth.
The health department said that indicates “a shift toward synthetic opioids and stimulants compared to previous phases of the local epidemic.”
Nationally, new data shows drug overdose deaths spiked by a third in 2020. More than 93,000 Americans died that year from overdoses. Opioids, including fentanyl, were behind the majority of those deaths.
Back in June, Metro Health said it was becoming a part of a pilot program that sends out texts when there's been a spike in overdoses. The goal is to reach people who could suffer an overdose and their loved ones when there are increases.
Metro Public Health says the Opioid/Overdose Response and Reduction Program watches data about drug use and outcomes. When an increase is found, the text is sent out.
If you would like to opt in to the spike alerts, text “spike” to 1-855-963-5669.