Often buried beneath news of the global pandemic and political discord, the ongoing opioid crisis continues unabated. Isolation, loss of income, and treatment center closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic have contributed to the increase of fatal overdoses.
September’s National Recovery Month continues to spotlight this health emergency and promote the benefits of prevention, treatment, and recovery, especially during a pandemic that has seen an increase in overdose fatalities. According to the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) studies, fatalities are trending upward by as much as 18%, following a year of 71,000 deaths.
Although too soon for definitive data, AAMC points out that alcohol sales have risen by 25%, and there is a worrisome trend of overdose from increased non prescribed fentanyl. The National Institute on Drug Reports that 90% of all drug fatalities in Maryland are from opioids (15,000 in 2018).
The Spy caught up with Kent County Sheriff John Price to find out how law enforcement is participating with National Recovery Month and how the pandemic has required alternative paths to reach out to the community.
This video is approximately six minutes in length. For more information about International Recovery Day please go here.