Baltimore has been referred to as the Heroin Capital of the US for years now, since before the opioid epidemic has swept the nation with crisis level overdose death statistics. Like most other large cities in our nation the epidemic is hitting Baltimore and the surrounding suburbs hard. This crisis has been a major priority of Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan. In 2016, Health and Mental Hygiene released the annual report of fatal overdoses from 2015. That report logged a total of 1,259 overdose deaths occurred in Maryland in 2015. The number of accidental overdose deaths has almost doubled since 2010.
The overdose rate in Baltimore has been due to heroin and other opioid based drugs in a majority of cases. According to ABC News, 1 in 10 Baltimore residents are addicted to heroin. Baltimore is different than most other U.S. cities when it comes to battling against this drug battle because out of a city of 645,000 residents, it is estimated that 60,000 are drug addicts and 48,000 specifically to heroin. Since the mid 90’s Baltimore has been looked at as key heroin distribution point for the drug being smuggled in from South America. Having these type of statistics and being familiar with the opioid problem for so many years many residents of Baltimore almost consider it a normal part of life. Many addicts have been around drugs their whole life, it has been passed down through the generations as normalcy rather than taboo.