Kenosha County Medical Examiner Patrice Hall is again warning people of the dangers of drugs, after her office responded to three suspected overdose cases in one day, on Saturday.
Hall said the deceased ranged in age from 20s to 50s. Two were men; one was a woman.
One of these individuals was taken to the Froedtert South St. Catherine’s Medical Center Campus from Antioch, Ill., making it a Kenosha County death investigation case. The other two cases were in the City of Kenosha and the Village of Twin Lakes.
All three cases occurred within about a 12-hour span. Hall said all three are suspected of using cocaine and/or heroin.
“It’s highly concerning that we had three suspected overdose deaths within such a short time span,” Hall said. “I’m bringing this to the attention of the public so that they are aware of what’s going on, and that treatment is available.”
To put into perspective the unusual nature of three fatal overdoses in one day, Hall noted that in all of 2018, her office processed 46 deaths due to toxicity – an average of less than one such case per week. Toxicity includes deaths due to abuse of any drugs, such as alcohol, cocaine, heroin and prescription medications, or a combination thereof.
In addition to the fatal cases, the Kenosha Fire Department on Saturday responded to two other, non-fatal overdose calls, said Jim Poltrock, the department’s Emergency Medical Services Division chief.
Poltrock noted that the fire department has handled an unusually high number of overdose cases in recent weeks. This includes 43 overdose calls between April 20 and May 26, 30 of which were opioid related. Most of these cases were not fatal.
Kenosha County continues to fight the opioid epidemic with efforts including the Kenosha County Opioid Task Force, free Narcan training and supply for anyone in the community, and medication-assisted treatment.
“We want people to know that there are resources readily available to people with addictive disorder, and that recovery is possible,” said Cynthia Johnson, director of the Kenosha County Division of Health. “If you know someone who is suffering from this disease, you could help save a life by sharing this information.”
Further information about prevention, treatment, and resources are listed below:
FREE NARCAN TRAININGS & EDUCATION
KNOW WHAT A SUSPECTED OVERDOSE LOOKS LIKE
For more information, please call the Kenosha County Division of Health at 262-605-6700 or visit http://www.kenoshacounty.org/.