Area residents noticed when a Norfolk Southern Railway train derailed in Ohio, spewing clouds of toxic gas and later smoke. After all, Norfolk Southern trains pass through Western North Carolina.
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From AVL Watchdog: Fentanyl and meth are now the two most common drugs in downtown Asheville, and the body count is rising
The Office of National Drug Control Policy has designated Buncombe, Henderson and McDowell counties as “High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas.” More than two-thirds of Americans live in a county designated as HIDTA, according to the website.
Year in Review: Health was more than metrics in 2022
Discussions about health and wellness have been dominated by COVID-19 for nearly three years, and that’s certainly been reflected in the media landscape nationwide. In Asheville, however, the effects of COVID-19 on physical health and mental health are just one story to be told.
Letter: Where’s the public safety action plan?
“More resources without strategy that apprehends the true nature of the challenge won’t get the public safety and public health job done.”
Letter: ‘Rainbow fentanyl’: fact vs. fiction
“The good news is there is no evidence to suggest there is fentanyl being laced into Halloween candy. The bad news is that middle and high schoolers can purchase pills through social media, friends or family.”
Recovery community seeks to stop more overdoses with naloxone
On Sept. 13, Buncombe County Health & Human Services issued an alert on social media and to local groups like the Homeless Coalition about a spike in overdoses in the county. “Please be advised, over the last several days there has been a continued spike in probable overdoses in Buncombe County,” the email alert from […]
Letter: Watch out for ‘rainbow fentanyl’
“Why isn’t this in local news, especially after confiscation of rainbow fentanyl in Cherokee?”
Letter: Asheville’s fentanyl crisis
“Given these facts, do you feel Asheville city leaders should reconsider defunding the police?”
Community paramedics introduce medication-assisted treatment for opioid use
Buncombe County EMS has a new tool for helping an individual suffering from an opioid overdose: medication-assisted treatment, or MAT.
Community paramedicine program addresses opiod overdoses
Buncombe County experienced a 147% increase in overdose deaths between 2015 and 2017, the most recent period for which data is available from the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services. According to Emergency Services, Buncombe averages six-to-eight deaths monthly from probable overdoses.
WNC health care providers work to cut opioid prescriptions
Drug abuse changed during the 13 years that Adam McIssac has been working as a drug and alcohol counselor in Asheville. At the beginning, McIssac mostly saw clients who were addicted to methamphetamine. But over time “pills,” including opioids like oxycodone (OxyContin) and hydrocodone (Vicodin), became the main drugs that his clients abused. Opioid abuse […]
COVID-19 stresses Buncombe opioid response
“We’ve got an epidemic within a pandemic,” says Kevin Mahoney with the Mountain Area Health Education Center. Social distancing, job losses and drug contamination associated with COVID-19 have all complicated local efforts to manage the impacts of opioid use.