Shelby County sees a spike in overdoses amidst pandemic

Overdose deaths top COVID-19 deaths in past 2 months

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Since the beginning of the pandemic, Shelby County has seen an increase in overdoses.

"We've had more deaths from overdose than we have had from COVID-19,” said Amy Weirich, Shelby County District Attorney.

Shelby County Health Department Director, Alisa Haushalter adding that in the last 60 days Shelby County has seen an unprecedented number of overdoses and deaths, in particular fentanyl deaths.

"Since March 15 we’ve experienced 700 overdoses and experienced 102 fatal overdoes,” said Haushalter.

The Shelby County Health Department, in conjunction with the Shelby County Opioid Taskforce, U.S. Attorney’s Office and the Shelby County District Attorney’s Office are working together to tackle the issue.

This week there are several Street Team for Overdose Prevention also known as (S.T.O.P) events where Narcan, treatment resources and needle exchange services will be offered.

S.T.O.P Events

All locations will provide overdose reversal kits and treatment resources, but needle exchange services will be available at Sycamore View, Claybrooks, and Summer Avenue locations only. – Shelby County Health Dept.

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

3360 N. Watkins Street, 4 p.m. – 8 p.m.

2760 S. Perkins Road, 4 p.m. – 8 p.m.

3362 S. 3rd Street, 4 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

1590 Sycamore View Road, 4 p.m. – 8 p.m.

28 N. Claybrook Street, 1 p.m. – 3 p.m.

3628 Summer Avenue, 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

Thursday, May 21, 2020

3360 N. Watkins Street, 4 p.m. – 8 p.m.

2760 S. Perkins Road, 4 p.m. – 8 p.m.

3362 S. 3rd Street, 4 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Friday, May 22, 2020

1590 Sycamore View Road, 4 p.m. – 8 p.m.

28 N. Claybrook Street, 1 p.m. – 3 p.m.

3628 Summer Avenue, 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

Saturday, May 23, 2020

1590 Sycamore View Road, 1 p.m. – 6 p.m.

28 N. Claybrook Street, 1 p.m. – 6 p.m.

3628 Summer Avenue, 1 p.m. – 6 p.m.

3360 N. Watkins Street, 1 p.m. – 6 p.m.

2760 S. Perkins Road, 1 p.m. – 6 p.m.

3362 S. 3rd Street, 1 p.m. – 6 p.m.

You can also call the Tennessee Red line at 800-889-9789 or Memphis Area Prevention Coalition 901-249-2828 for treatment and services.

“For those who are not able or ready yet to seek treatment we want to make sure that you have access to Narcan, and that you’re appropriately trained,” said Haushalter.

She continued to say there is no shortage of detox beds and no new drug or a connection linking the deaths.

In addition to tackling this issue, both Shelby County District Attorney, Amy Weirich and United States Attorney, Michael Dunavant say their offices are working together to stop drug dealers.

“Law enforcement will do everything they can in their power to identify you and bring you to justice,” said Weirich.

Dunavant adding that the Department of Justice has never closed, and won’t stop now.

“Law enforcement agents are working tirelessly to find and arrest and prosecute those people who are distributing these dangerous drugs and poison into our communities,” said Dunavant.

You can call the Tennessee Redline at 800-889-9789 or Memphis Area Prevention Coalition 901-249-2828 for treatment and services.

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