Officials report four drug overdose cases in 24 hours


WATERTOWN, N.Y. (June 16, 2020) – Health officials say Jefferson County has experienced four overdoses from drug use within 24 hours.

Jefferson County Public Health Service officials said individuals who use drugs – including but not limited to marijuana, cocaine, methamphetamine, and heroin – must understand that no drug is safe, and any drug could contain lethal amounts of fentanyl.

Officials said the county has experienced 21 known overdoses from drug use this month. They went on to say fentanyl is the suspected primary drug; however, other drugs or combinations of drugs are causing these overdoses.

Of the 21 overdoses in June, 18 individuals survived; there were three fatalities. Twelve overdoses occurred in the city of Watertown, while nine overdoses occurred outside the city. In addition, officials say individuals who are overdosing and surviving are requiring multiple doses of Naloxone.

According to data submitted by first responders using the ODMAP software system, overdose activity has steadily risen since March when there were 22 suspected overdoses reported, followed by 27 suspected overdoses reported in April, and 32 suspected overdoses reported in May. Year-to-date total suspected overdoses are 136.

There have been 13 confirmed overdose deaths for 2020 in Jefferson County, including three in January, one in February, five in March, two in April, and two in May. Eleven (85%) of these confirmed deaths are due to opioids – 10 of those attributed specifically to fentanyl. An additional four overdose fatalities are pending toxicology report confirmation.     


Community resources

The Jefferson County Public Health Service, Jefferson County Department of Community Services, and the Alliance for Better Communities want to remind people that a number of community resources have been established and expanded to help people who have substance use disorders, and for people to access these resources to receive assistance and treatment:

  • Anchor Recovery Center of NNY: (315) 836-3460

  • Credo Community Center for Treatment of Addictions: (315) 788-1530

  • ACR Health: (315) 785-8222

  • Samaritan Addiction Services: (315) 779-5060

  • Samaritan Medical Center - social worker on call: (315) 785-4516

  • Suicide Prevention Hotline: 1-800-273-8255

  • Northern Regional Center for Independent Living: (315) 785-8703 business hours; and (315) 785-8708 nights and weekends.

  • Mobile Crisis Jefferson County: (315) 782-2327 of (315) 777-9681 Hope Line: 1-877-8-HOPENY or Text 46736


To receive Naloxone training and free kits, contact Credo, ACR Health, or the Anchor Recovery Center of NNY.

The public is also reminded of New York State’s 911 Good Samaritan Law, which allows people to call 911 without fear of arrest due to drug possession if they are having a drug or alcohol overdose that requires emergency medical care or if they witness someone overdosing.


(Jefferson County Public Health Service)