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Nazareth, Pa., United States

Thursday, August 06, 2015

Bethlehem Health Bureau Reports Alarming Increase in Synthetic Marijuana ODs

FROM BETHLEHEM BUREAU OF HEALTH: Overdoses due to the use of synthetic marijuana remain a concern in the City of Bethlehem. The Bethlehem Health Bureau has been working with the Bethlehem Police Department and Bethlehem EMS to collect data on the number of emergency calls from individuals who have used synthetic marijuana. Although the dangers have been widely publicized, the City of Bethlehem has steadily seen an increase in the number of overdose related calls. A total of 55 calls were made to 9-1-1 from April through July and 49 resulted in a transport to a local hospital. The majority of the overdose victims have been young males.

Marketed as a “legal high”, the use of synthetic cannabinoids or synthetic marijuana can cause dangerous side effects, including increased heart rate and blood pressure, psychotic episodes and seizures. The use of synthetic marijuana also creates a hazard to public safety because of the violent reactions the drug can produce. Newer versions continue to appear on the market because manufacturers change their chemical compounds to create a “new” drug to circumvent existing laws. The Bethlehem Health Bureau warns that synthetic marijuana is dangerous and poses a serious threat to public health. The Bethlehem Health Bureau will continue to work with the police department and EMS to monitor data on overdoses related to synthetic marijuana in an effort to effectively develop and target prevention efforts. In addition, the Bethlehem Police Department is urging store owners to pull synthetic marijuana products from their shelves.

If someone you know has used synthetic marijuana, call your local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Dial 9-1-1 immediately if someone has stopped breathing, collapses or has seizures.


Anonymous said...

Alcohol Prohibition gave us increased crime, increased addiction and deadly bathtub gin. Pot prohibition has given us increased crime, increased addiction and deadly synthetic weed. History repeats and repeats.

Anonymous said...

Go after the Heroin dealers first and provide treatment for those currently addicted!

Anonymous said...

Rehab is for quitters. We should continue to lock 'em all up. It provides lots of jobs for attorneys, judges, courtroom staff, probation officers, corrections officers, and is terrific for the burgeoning private prison industry. Where will all these people find work without a "war on drugs" to fight? Stay the course. It's working great! Isn't it?

Anonymous said...

Let 'em smoke it 'til they drop dead over it.