90% increase in kids visiting ER due to opioids, new report says

A new report says kids overdosing on opioids is up 90% from last year in Montgomery County

Just days after a group of Montgomery County school children became sick after ingesting drugs they’d found, Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich shared Wednesday that the number of kids who have been brought into ER's after overdosing on opioids and fentanyl has jumped up massively in the past year. Data shows that since 2017, the numbers were increasing steadily. But so far for 2023, emergency room visits by minors are already double all of 2022. 

Dr. Holley Meers tells FOX 5 she’s alarmed by this young patient surge, but she’s not surprised because she sees it regularly.

"I think that some of it is kids are getting these overdoses because they think they’re taking one thing, and it turns out to be something else," said Meers. "It’s just really frightening that young people are just sort of choosing to use whenever. They really do not know what’s happening and it’s dangerous."

Montgomery County has held public forums with students and parents at schools warning of the dangers of fentanyl and opioid, but the emergency room numbers show it’s not enough. Elrich says he blames drug companies, and drug dealers, who he says need to be held accountable.


Youth overdose deaths increased by 120% in Montgomery County

A 15-year-old Kennedy High School student was found dead of a suspected overdose by her mother over the weekend. Montgomery County leaders say the issue is becoming more common.

"I’m deeply disappointed that no one went to jail. I mean the owners of these companies made decisions and encouraged putting these drugs into the hands of millions of people and it’s resulted in thousands of deaths and it’s astounding," said Elrich.