Opioid drugs claim childrens’ lives

Published: Monday, March 20, 2017 @ 3:12 PM


The opioid epidemic ravaging Ohio’s adult population has also claimed hundreds of thousands of children and adolescents as victims, based on a new study that found poison centers across the country receive an average of 32 calls a day about youths who have ingested prescription opioid drugs.

Children age 5 and younger who swallowed prescription medications, such as hydrocodone and oxycodone, accounted for about 60 percent of the 188,468 calls tracked from 2000 through 2015, according to the study by the Center for Injury Research and Policy and the Central Ohio Poison Center at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus.

RELATED: Workers under employers watch for opioid use

Young children were less likely than teenagers to be admitted to a hospital for opioid poisoning, according to the study. But children are perhaps most vulnerable to the potentially lethal consequences of prescription opioids, which have accounted for tens of thousands of adult deaths in Ohio over the past decade, coinciding with a dramatic increase in the number of prescriptions written for opioids, according to Henry Spiller, director of the poison center, and one of the studies authors.

“If you’re an adult who weighs 200 pounds, a single prescription opioid tablet may make you drowsy. But if you only weigh 22 pounds, like an average 1-year-old, it could be fatal,” Spiller said, referring to the increased toxicity of opioid exposure for people with smaller body masses.

RELATED: Pill bags let users dispose of prescription drugs safely

Overall, there were 175 fatalities in children and adolescents under age 20 across the U.S. during the study period, according to data analyzed from the National Poison Data System.

All of the child victims ingested opioids by “just going out and putting things in their mouths,” Spiller said, while teenagers were more likely to take the drugs intentionally.

“The teenagers knew where the drugs were available in the home, and they ended up either stealing them for abuse or to commit suicide,” said Spiller, who noted the rate of prescription opioid–related suspected suicides among teenagers increased by 52.7 percent during the study period.

RELATED: County strained by efforts to curb drug deaths

As dire as the situation may seem, policies aimed at fighting opioid addiction, including Gov. John Kasich’s efforts to shut down so-called “pill mills” in Ohio, have had a positive impact in recent years, Spiller said.

According to the study, the annual number and rate of opioid exposure for all youth under age 20 began to decline from 2009 to 2015 — when many state and federal opioid drug policies and prescribing guidelines were implemented — after surging by 86 percent in the prior decade.

But the study also uncovered disturbing trends that continue to threaten the lives of young children, in particular.

For example, contrary to trends for other prescription opioids, exposure to buprenorphine, otherwise known as Saboxone, increased rapidly in the final three years of the study.

And children age 5 and younger accounted for 90 percent of exposures to buprenorphine, a less potent opioid prescribed to ween addicts off more powerful opioids, such as Vicodin and Percocet.

“That really stood out to us,” Spiller said. “Almost all of the exposure to buprenorphine was in children, and we don’t know why.”

Human waste found in Coca-Cola cans in Northern Ireland

Published: Wednesday, March 29, 2017 @ 10:37 PM

(Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

A Coca-Cola factory in Northern Ireland halted production last week after human waste was discovered in its soda cans, The Guardian reported. 

>> Florida man walking on beach finds bale of marijuana

Now police are investigating how this could have happened at the Hellenic Bottling Company. 

>> Read more trending news

The company said none of the contaminated products made it onto store shelves and they impounded the contaminated cans, according to The Guardian. They noticed the problem when machines at the plant became clogged.

“The problem was identified immediately through our robust quality procedures,” Coca-Cola said in a statement. 

>> Study: 10,000 steps might not be enough for healthy life
“This is an isolated incident and does not affect any products currently on sale.”

Read more at The Guardian

Ivanka Trump will take official White House role as the assistant to the president

Published: Wednesday, March 29, 2017 @ 9:52 PM

Ivanka Trump (Photo by  Andrew Harrer-Pool/Getty Images)
Pool/Getty Images

After ethics questions were raised about the nature of her role in the White House, Ivanka Trump will officially become an employee of the federal government and will work as the “assistant to the president” for no pay.

>> Read more trending news

Last week, reports came out suggesting the first daughter would be getting a White House office, security clearance and government-issued phone as an informal adviser without an official job title. Concerns over the unidentified description of her role and potential conflicts of interest prompted Democratic Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Tom Carper (D-DE) to send a letter to the Office of Government Ethics.

RELATED: Ivanka Trump shared the sweetest message for her youngest baby in honor of his first birthday

“Ms. Trump’s increasing, albeit unspecified, White House role, her potential conflicts of interest, and her commitment to voluntarily comply with relevant ethics and conflict of interest laws have resulted in substantial confusion,” the letter read.

In response, Ivanka Trump provided a statement obtained by The New York Times, in which she addresses the confusion and announced her new position.

“I have heard the concerns some have with my advising the president in my personal capacity while voluntarily complying with all ethics rules, and I will instead serve as an unpaid employee in the White House office, subject to all of the same rules as other federal employees,” she said. “Throughout this process I have been working closely and in good faith with the White House counsel and my personal counsel to address the unprecedented nature of my role.”

The White House also addressed the news, with a spokeswoman for President Trump saying, “We are pleased that Ivanka Trump has chosen to take this step in her unprecedented role as first daughter and in support of the president. Ivanka’s service as an unpaid employee furthers our commitment to ethics, transparency and compliance and affords her increased opportunities to lead initiatives driving real policy benefits for the American public that would not have been available to her previously.”

Police release victims’ IDs, reports in deadly Cincinnati nightclub shooting

Published: Wednesday, March 29, 2017 @ 9:25 PM

Police reports and emergency dispatch audio was released today from Cincinnati’s worst mass shooting that left one man dead and 16 others wounded.

The victims – 14 men and three woman who ranged in age from 24 to 33 – were shot shortly before 1:30 a.m. Sunday by multiple gunmen inside Cameo Night Club, 4601 Kellogg Ave. One man was shot in the head, another in the back and stomach, and another person was shot three times, records show.

O’Bryan Spikes, 27, was fatally shot in the chest. Of the other 16 victims, all but two – who remain in critical condition at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center – have been released from Cincinnati area hospital, police said.

RELATED: Cincinnati nightclub to permanently close after deadly shooting

The 16 surviving victims are: Shannon Brown, 25; Deondre Davis, 29; Rodney Espy, 30; Michael Feagins Jr., 30; Jarrod Givens, 26; Stephen Haley, 28; Christopher Harris, 34; Jordan Harris, 24; Rayshunda Higgins, 33; Khristian Howell, 26; Ronald Lee, 33; Regina Madaris, 33; Nathan McClendon, 27; Valor Stanley, 28; Bryant Stevenson, 28; and Jraejah Warren, 28.

A timeline is based on an incident detail report released today by the Cincinnati Police Department.

  • Sunday, 1:29 a.m.: The first report comes in of shots fired while about 200 people were inside the Cameo Night Club
  • 1:30 a.m. Reports of three people down, someone else reports a friend is shot; and a man is reported to have a gunshot wound to the head 
  • 1:31 a.m.: Police on scene report at least six shooting victims; they ask for expedited fire response 
  • 1:33 a.m. Police order Kellogg Avenue blocked in all directions; CPR begins inside the club; and a driver with his brother suffering gunshots to his back and stomach tries to flag down a rescue vehicle 
  • 1:38 a.m. Police report it is safe for fire personnel to enter club 
  • 1:42 a.m. Report comes that one victim has three gunshot wounds 
  • 1:45 a.m: Two officers detain someone standing with a gun inside the club; crews report all victims inside club accounted for 
  • 1:48 a.m. Hamilton County Sheriff's Office activate disaster network 
  • 1:50 a.m. Two additional gunshot victims walk into the University of Cincinnati Medical Center 
  • 1:53 a.m. A man with a gunshot wound to his back is found in front of nightclub 
  • 1:54 a.m. Crews report at least five or six victims suffer from critical chest wounds 
  • 1:56 a.m. All victims from inside the club have been taken to area hospitals; two more victims remain outside club 
  • 2:06 a.m. Another victim is found at Delta and Stanley avenues 
  • 2:11 a.m. Two additional victims walk into Bethesda North Hospital 
  • 2:12 a.m. Police recover a gun at Stanley Avenue 
  • 2:14 a.m. A gunshot victim shows up at a firehouse

5 injured in 3-vehicle accident on state Route 235, Xenia Twp.

Published: Wednesday, March 29, 2017 @ 7:19 PM
Updated: Wednesday, March 29, 2017 @ 9:47 PM

XENIA TWP., Greene County -- UPDATE @ 8:52 p.m.:  The accident in the area of state Route 235 and West Enon Road involved three vehicles and sent five people to hospitals, all suffering from non-life threatening injuries, troopers with the Ohio Highway Patrol post at Xenia tell us.

The cause of the accident is under investigation.

The accident has been cleared and both roads are open.


An accident in the area of state Route 235 and West Enon Road involving at least two vehicles has prompted authorities to shut down the roadway. 

We're hearing that at least one injury has resulted from the accident reported just after 7 p.m. Greene County sheriff's deputies and troopers with the Ohio Highway Patrol are on scene. 

We're also hearing that a third medic unit has been dispatched. 

We will update this developing report as we get information.