Addiction in Wilmington
The people of Wilmington, Delaware, are currently losing a battle against synthetic opioids. Not all of these are coming from Delaware, however. In fact, much of the drugs that are responsible for Wilmington’s crisis are coming from overseas. Still, the city faces a battle that is one of the worst in the country. 2015 alone saw 768,974 new prescriptions written for opioids pain relievers, (OPRs). That comes out to 80 prescriptions for every 100 people in Delaware.
Despite the growing awareness of the dangers of opioids, more people are dying across New Castle County and creating one of the top ten death-rates in the nation.
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Heroin, Fentanyl, and Pills in Wilmington
Local law enforcement in Wilmington aren’t just battling local dealers. Multiple federal agencies must watch the Port of Wilmington for heroin, fentanyl, and fake prescription pills coming from overseas. A recent inspection in 2018 found fentanyl-laced heroin and marijuana coming into the city. Another search, in 2016, resulted in the raiding of a home in New Castle County that had 49,969 Schedule II and IV substances. That includes prescription opioids and benzodiazepines.
Authorities in Wilmington warn that any drug bought illicitly, whether it is prescription or synthetic, could potentially contain fentanyl. For that reason, it is more dangerous than ever to use any kind of drug, and people who are looking to recover should find help immediately. Fentanyl is so potent that all it takes is 3 milligrams for a lethal overdose.
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Overdose in Wilmington
Wilmington, with the greatest population in Delaware, has seen a large share of the overdose deaths in the state. Across New Castle County, emergency services are sent to help someone who is overdosing every 80 minutes. That makes 18 people a day and doesn’t include situations where 911 isn’t called. Between January to the beginning of November, paramedics in New Castle County administered naloxone to almost 600 people, not including the circumstances where the person overdosing needed multiple doses to be successfully revived.
From July of 2016 to September of 2017, Delaware emergency rooms saw a 105% increase in admissions from an opioid overdose. That increase resulted in a total of 2,075 emergency room visits across the state. Of those, 1,529 visits happened in New Castle County.
In 2017, deaths from overdoses rose by nearly 37%, from 182 to 249. Of that 249 deaths, a massive 141 involved fentanyl, making it one of the worst fentanyl problems in the country. Much of that is due to the proximity to the port, and also the amount of fentanyl-laced heroin. 101 deaths in 2017 also involved heroin. The two numbers are not exclusive of each other, so it is likely that there was overlap between the two drugs.
In 2017, 249 individuals died of overdose in New Castle County, Delaware.
Of the 249 total deaths in New Castle County, 141 of them involved fentanyl.
There was a climb in overdose deaths of 37% from 2016 to 2017 in New Castle County.
Treatment in Wilmington
If you or someone you love suffer from addiction, finding the right place to get help is often the first step to recovery. However, when the area that the person is living in is small and full of temptation, it can be hard to figure out where that is. If you’re not sure where to look, try reaching out to a dedicated treatment provider.