Heroin Epidemic in Northeast Ohio - Our Community Action Plan
The Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner's Office is a public service agency responsible for the investigation of violent, suspicious and sudden and unexpected deaths, such as overdose deaths, including those due to opiates and heroin.
The Medical Examiner’s Laboratory supports the investigative functions of the Medical Examiner and staff. The Laboratory performs scientific examinations in the areas of Forensic Pathology, Trace Evidence, Serology, DNA, Parentage and identification, Toxicology, Controlled Substance Analysis, and Forensic Chemistry
. Such testing often results in the identification of the cause of overdose deaths and can provide a detailed analysis of drugs found at the scene.
The Medical Examiner’s Office utilizes and makes available the information gathered from these investigations to those citizens and personnel who have an interest in developing ways to prevent these types of tragic deaths from happening in the future. Data is also utilized to monitor the effectiveness of publicly funded projects that are already in place and to identify gaps in the system. This will be the aim of the Cuyahoga County Poison Death Review Committee, which will isolate all heroin related overdose deaths within Cuyahoga County for intensive examination
. This work is done in collaboration with the Opiate Collaborative of the Cuyahoga County Department of Health
This public health crisis is being addressed by a community-wide effort of education, prevention, treatment and interdiction. Below are important links to more resources: