Map provided for all overdose deaths
Maps provided for meth and cocaine overdose deaths
This map shows the worst overdose death rates in Ohio so far in 2021.
Note that Ohio’s three most populous counties — Franklin, Cuyahoga and Hamilton — are not even on the deadliest counties list. In other words, as bad as it is in these urban counties, it’s worse elsewhere, especially in southern Ohio. Lawrence County (Ironton), at Ohio’s southernmost tip, has become the deadliest place in the state for drug overdoses, displacing neighboring Scioto County (Portsmouth) for the No. 1 overdose death rate ranking.
Another overdose pocket that needs more attention is the de-industrializing Youngstown area (Mahoning County) in eastern Ohio. Youngstown is the largest metro area in Ohio without a syringe service program. It’s not a stretch to say you can see the results of this neglect here, in this map, which documents where people who use drugs die at the most horrific rates.
Meth Overdose Deaths
These counties have the highest meth-related overdose death rates in Ohio so far this year. Note: about 80% of meth overdose deaths also involve fentanyl.
Cocaine Overdose Deaths
The counties in this map have suffered the highest rates of cocaine-related overdose death in Ohio so far this year. Cocaine deaths include those for both powder cocaine and crack cocaine. About 80% of cocaine-related deaths involve fentanyl.
Notice that cocaine overdose deaths skew urban. All major Ohio cities are represented in the Top 20 of cocaine overdose death rates. Ohio’s Black residents have the highest rates of cocaine overdose death. In contrast, meth overdoses disproportionately affects rural White residents.
Analysis by Dennis Cauchon, President, Harm Reduction Ohio
Maps by Harm Reduction Ohio public health fellow Sydney Tavens
Data source: Ohio Department of Health mortality database, August 7, 2021