McHenry County begins posting monthly opioid reports online
The McHenry County Department of Health is now releasing monthly opioid reports online.
"Monthly surveillance reports available to the public will provide insights for public health professionals, community partners and concerned county residents," the department said in a news release.
The reports can be found at www.mchenrycountyil.gov/home
The county established the Opioid Surveillance and Response program in 2019 after seeing more cases of area residents overdosing on opioids. The program's goal is to inform community organizations, public health officials and the public about where opioid-related incidents are occurring.
Overdose deaths in McHenry County jumped in 2020 to 51 from 37 in 2019, according to McHenry County coroner's office data. And, the average age of those who died fell.
So far this year, there have been 24 opioid overdose deaths in McHenry County, according to the first report published online.
"Preventing opioid-related overdoses in McHenry County requires all of us to work together," McHenry County Department of Health epidemiologist Ryan Sachs said in a statement. "With this system in place, accurate and timely data is made available to inform public health response and policies, which could be used to prevent opioid overdoses."
Heroin is one common form of opioids, however, officials say synthetic opioids like fentanyl can be more deadly because they increase the effects of the drug. More fentanyl on the streets is one reason officials think they are seeing more cases of opioid overdoses in recent years.