NewsCovering Kern County


Drug overdoses spike nearly 30% during pandemic

Local resident turns his life around.
Fentanyl Opioids CNN
Posted at 11:24 PM, Jul 14, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-15 13:49:11-04

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KERO) — It’s an issue happening all around the world, including here in Kern County. The U.S is seeing a record number of deaths due to drug overdoses, spiking nearly 30% during the pandemic.

According to the CDC there were more than 93,000 reported deaths from overdoses in 2020, which is about 20,000 more than the previous year, and one drug, in particular, is a focus of those numbers.

Nura Chacon with Action Family Counseling says, “Fentanyl. Fentanyl overdoses comes to mind. Because that’s the thing these days with the kids and it's just so heartbreaking. It makes me very emotional to think of our young people dying like that.”

Chacon says this because Opioids made up nearly three-quarters of those who died from drug overdoses in 2020, with 48 states in the U.S, including California, seeing a rise. Making it the largest annual increase in at least 50 years.

If you or someone you know is in need of help here is a list of resources:

  • Action Family Counseling: 661-325-4357 or 661- 325- HELP
  • Kern Behavioral Health and Recovery Services: 661-868-6600
  • Substance Use Division with Kern BHRS: 661-868-6453
  • Crisis Services with Kern BHRS: 661-868-8000

Online resources: