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Columbus Public Health Community Advisory for Increase in Overdose Deaths

Press Release: January 17, 2018

Kelli Newman Myers              Columbus Public Health         614-645-7213    


Community Advisory for Increase in Overdose Deaths with both Cocaine and Fentanyl in System Trend Highlights that Fentanyl can be found in any Recreational Street Drug

Columbus Public Health is issuing a community advisory to notify the public of an increase in overdose deaths with cocaine and fentanyl. This trend highlights that fentanyl can be mixed with all recreational street drugs, including cocaine, meth and heroin.

According to death certificate data, 30 percent of all overdose deaths of Franklin County residents had both cocaine and fentanyl in their system at the time of death. The number of deaths that involved both cocaine and fentanyl has more than doubled from 41 to 88 deaths from 2016-2017.

People using cocaine may be exposed to more drug substances than they thought, and should be aware of the high possibility for overdose and death with fentanyl.

Because fentanyl is being mixed with any street drug and not just opiates, public health officials advise recreational drug users, residents affected by substance use disorders, and their family and friends to follow our recommendations to reduce harm and death.

If you are using any street drugs:

Get naloxone, a drug which reverses the effects of an overdose.
Be aware of the dangers of mixing drugs including stimulants.
Layering or stacking drugs will not prevent an overdose.
Do not use drugs alone.
Seek treatment.
If you have a family member or friend who is using drugs:

Get naloxone.
If you administer naloxone, call 9-1-1.
If you don’t have naloxone, administer CPR.
Encourage your loved one to seek treatment.
“Fentanyl can be mixed with any street drug and the user may not even know it is in there,” says Health Commissioner Dr. Mysheika W. Roberts. “If you are using any substance, you don’t really know what you’re getting. Fentanyl can be mixed with it – and it can kill you. If you are using any illicit substance, have naloxone on hand.”

For more information on the opiate epidemic and the Franklin County Opiate Action Plan, please click here.







240 Parsons Ave, Columbus, OH 43215

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Continuing our digital journey to make healthcare accessible, convenient and easy to find, patients seeking OhioHealth Urgent Care services can now ask Amazon Alexa. After enabling the free OhioHealth skill, users can ask Alexa questions like “Alexa, ask OhioHealth for the wait time at Dublin Urgent Care” or “Alexa, ask OhioHealth for the nearest urgent care.”

OhioHealth is the first healthcare system in the state to use the voice-powered technology in this manner. The OhioHealth skill can be used to find the nearest urgent care, get the current wait time, find hours of operation and receive contact information for a specific OhioHealth urgent care location. The wait time feature is available for all of the central Ohio locations and is updated every minute.

ODOT Columbus Grant Avenue Bridge Project Update


Part of the current construction project to improve the Interstate 70/71 downtown ‘split’ includes tearing down the current Grant Avenue Bridge- which is more than 50 years old– and replacing it with a new one.

To prepare for demolition, the bridge will close Tuesday, January 9 at 8 AM. That means  overnight lane closures and restrictions for drivers. Advance notification of traffic impacts will be provided.

Please visit to get the most up to date traffic information.

The new Grant Avenue bridge is expected to open later this fall, weather permitting.

The new bridge (rendering below) features wider sidewalks, a bike lane, improved lighting and aesthetics.

Along with a new bridge at Grant Avenue, the current project improves Mound Street between 4th and High Streets by adding granite curbs, brick crosswalks, decorative signals, lighting and landscaping. The project also converts Fulton Street to one-way eastbound from 4th to Washington.

During construction, Grant Avenue traffic will be detoured.

Southbound Grant Ave. Detour: Mound St. WB to 3rd SB to Livingston head east.

Northbound Grant Ave Detour: Livingston EB to Parsons NB to Main St. head west.

The $31 million project which started this past spring is expected to be complete by late fall 2018.