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Is Heroin Use Worse In Chicago Than Other Places?

I hear stories about heroin use on the rise in this area. Is it really any worse in the Chicago area than anywhere else?



Yes. There has been a growing problem with suburban, mostly white and young heroin users. Some of these users started with prescription drugs and moved on to heroin use because of easier access and affordability. Recently, the Illinois State Police reported an increase from December 2013–January 2014 in the number of seized and analyzed drug items containing heroin. The most important findings for the Chicago area were the dramatic increase in the number of heroin-related deaths in suburban counties around Chicago (DuPage, Lake, Will, McHenry, and Kane).
In Springfield, Illinois lawmakers are proposing laws to combat growing heroin and prescription drug use. The proposed law would require 1) more government law enforcement as well as teachers and family members of addicts be trained to distribute the anti-heroin overdose drug Narcan, 2) heroin and opiate drug prevention education in public schools, 3) that Coroners report deaths due to drug overdoses to the Department of Public Health, 4) designated pharmacies as sites to take back unused prescription medication and 5) that doctors determine “possible addiction tendencies” before prescribing any painkillers.

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